Fittest Executive Checkup with Mike Whaley

Thirty top-level professionals are competing in the first annual Fittest Executive Challenge, presented by In Business magazine. Who will earn the healthiest marks? Find out at the In Business Expo & Conference on Oct. 17.

This week, IB checks in with Mike Whaley, president of TURIS Systems, LLC.

Category: Fittest Executive – Men Over 50

Why are you participating in the Fittest Executive Challenge?
Actually, my administrative marketing assistant told me I should because I was always coming into the office talking about what I did at Boot Camp or where my wife and I rode our bikes to over the weekend. I’m sure she thinks I am a little “fitness crazy” sometimes.

Tell us about your fitness regimen.
My fitness regimen consists of two major components. First, three days a week my wife and I attend a one-hour Boot Camp program at Hybrid Fitness at 5:30 a.m. (no excuses for meetings that time of the day). We have been doing this for over a year now, and it has had a huge impact on both of us. I am also an avid bicyclist. I will ride my bike anytime I can for as long as I can. I’m not always the fastest; I just love to ride for hours at a time and enjoy the calming Wisconsin scenery. At least once a year, I like to do a “century” ride (100 miles) as part of an event. This spring I did the Trek 100, which was a great start to the bike event season. Beyond my workout and biking, I spend as much time as possible outdoors: kayaking, snowshoeing, etc. I enjoy Wisconsin!

How has your workout changed?
The Boot Camp has really changed my fitness condition. Prior to the boot camp, I biked quite a bit and thought I was in relatively good shape. Now with the overall fitness training that we do – a mixture of cardio, weight training, and core development – my endurance and daily energy have improved. The staff at Hybrid has also taught me how and what to eat. I eat a lot less red meat, smaller portions, more whole grains, and fish. I notice the biggest change in how I feel. I physically have less energy if I miss a Boot Camp due to a vacation or business trip, or eat junk food over a weekend.

What are you doing to prepare for your evaluation?
I haven’t really changed my routine, except for pushing myself a little more at Boot Camp. I did not want to change my routine. I want get a good sense of where I am and not just push it for this program.

How do you stay motivated?
First, it is great that my wife gets up and goes to the gym with me! When there are two of us going together and for the same reasons, it is a great motivator. If she weren’t rolling out of bed at 4:40 a.m. with me, I would probably not be there nearly as often.

My second motivation is my desire to be able to stay as active as possible. Use it or lose it! I look back to my parents. At my current age, they were maybe taking a walk around the block to get some exercise, but that was the standard back then.

The other motivation for me is that I run a company full of very young technology developers and implementers. I need to keep my energy up to keep up with this group and, quite honestly, to be a motivator for them. I believe that being in shape and physically fit helps me to have higher energy, work through the stress better, and maintain that positive attitude that everyone needs.

Last motivator: honestly, it makes me feel good to work out.

Meet all of the competitors here, then vote for your favorite to win the “Readers’ Choice” awards on Twitter @ibmadison #FittestExec.


Sign up for the free IB Update – your weekly resource for local business news, analysis, voices, and the names you need to know. Click here. If you are not already a subscriber to In Business magazine, be sure to sign up for our monthly print edition here.