CoM Quote 8-25-23

When is the last time you did something for the first time?

In day 5 of this 5-day email series on How to Master Your Mindset & Unleash the Warrior Within, I’d like to leave you with one final question to ponder that can potentially change the trajectory of your life…if you’re willing to answer it honestly.

Let’s start by acknowledging the giant elephant in the room, shall we?

I’m launching a brand new Spartan training program during the worst industry-wide shutdown in a generation. And yes I believe this shutdown is worse than Covid because back in 2020, we were all in this together as a society across all industries. Not to mention there were countless financial programs to keep us afloat.

But for those of us in the entertainment industry, this time we’re on our own. And just like Covid, we have NO IDEA when this is going to end. Therefore, I understand the need to hunker down, conserve resources, and wait things out.

To be very clear: If joining my Spartan training program causes you any level of financial hardship, this is not the time to join. I am the last person that wants to contribute to your anxiety. Best for us to reconnect next year.

However, as one reader put it so eloquently:

I’ve been thinking even with the tight financial situation, now would be the best time since I’m unemployed. Why is it that when we have the most time to do the things we are most interested in, we don’t have the resources?

Needless to say, this person joined a few hours afterwards when they calculated the cost of joining (which can be broken up into four monthly payments) versus the cost of not joining: Sitting at home stewing in his own anxiety & despair, staring at the wall wondering how long it will be before there are jobs again.

Shortly after another reader reached out to me:

I’m a complete mess. I feel lost in my life’s purpose, and I am having an identity crisis because I’m not sure how else I could provide value to the world. I literally laughed out loud at the image of Grandpa Simpson yelling at a cloud because I am reaching a new level of kinship with him. I want to re-enter “Learning Mode” but I miss the structure, companionship, and guidance that school provides. I know I’m not alone in feeling the way I do because I’m seeing so many of our peers feeling the same way.

As I talked about in yesterday’s newsletter, if there’s one thing we’ve lost sight of over the last few years it’s the value of community. Collectively we are all feeling the same fears…the problem is we’re collectively feeling them alone. And there’s no better way to build a community of peers and genuine friends than through shared hardship.

This brings me to the Spartan Group. It’s never been a matter of “I can’t do that” but more “That’s not for me.”

Thinking you have to be an athlete to train for a Spartan Race is a VERY common response for creatives who have never tried hard physical things before (myself included). But it’s as far from the truth as possible.

If you’re worried this isn’t for you, you would not be competing AGAINST me and the other team members. You would be competing WITH all of us in a supportive environment where we all challenge each other to face our fears in a safe space and step outside our comfort zones.

So then what exactly are we doing week to week? Are we running? Are we lifting weights? Are we doing summersaults? Monkey Bars? BTW if you have a go-to video explaining the Spartan race mentality or what this course would involve, send that over to save time answering questions!

Happy to! Here’s a video featurette that will cover most of your questions (not to mention inspire the sh*t out of you).


To quickly summarize, this program is the most comprehensive “functional fitness” regimen you will encounter anywhere.

  • No two workouts are ever the same.
  • There is a mixture of individual exercises and “Survivor-style” team challenges.
  • It’s often just you vs. Mother Nature.
  • You will run.
  • You will carry buckets.
  • You will flip over tires.
  • You will climb ropes.
  • You will do burpees.
  • You will do pull-ups and push-ups.
  • You will swing on rings & monkey bars.
  • You will also stretch and become more mobile.
  • You will learn how to reduce & eliminate your chronic pains.
  • You will also become more mindful and learn to meditate.
  • Most importantly you will learn how to confront your fears.

One of my biggest concerns is that I have a variety of physical ailments that cause me to get injured very easily/quickly. I think I can get into the mindset, it’s really more a fear of getting injured that’s giving me pause.

In these workout you are running your own race. Which means no matter your current level of fitness, no matter your current abilities or disabilities, you have the freedom to modify to make this workout fit your needs without fear of judgment from me or any of the other team members.

  • If you cannot run, you will jog.
  • If you cannot jog, you will walk.
  • If you cannot walk, you will crawl.
  • And if you cannot crawl, I will carry you.
  • Whatever it takes, we will get you across that finish line together.

The key is finding your discomfort zone and doing the hardest version of what you CAN do with whatever modifications are necessary to keep you safe. Because outside your comfort zone is where growth and change occur.

When is the last time you did something for the first time?

I’m not saying this journey is going to be easy. In fact this might be one of the toughest challenges you’ve ever faced in your life. But as we say in the Spartan community, when you try something new for the first time, “you’ll know at the finish line.”

What you’ll know at the finish line is what you’re capable of and who you’ve always been.

(Cue the chorus of Eminem’s “Lose Yourself”)

So what’s it going to take to make this moment a reality?

  • Imagine training with world-class athletes and legit ninjas who understand how to help you find your unique discomfort zone based on your current level of fitness and help you discover your unique version of 1% better.
  • Imagine learning a whole new skillset to help you confront and overcome not only difficult physical obstacles but also the mental obstacles life throws our way every single day.
  • Imagine surrounding yourself with a network of like-minded individuals all of whom are there to not only discover their own potential but support you in discovering yours (PRO TIP: This is a HUGE networking opportunity!).
  • Imagine spending every other weekend visiting a variety of amazing locations throughout Los Angeles like the sand dunes of Malibu, muscle beach in Santa Monica, and some of the most beautiful hiking spots in Southern California.

This is just a sampling of what’s in store for you if you join us for the next four months from this Sunday until you cross the finish line of your first Spartan Race in December.

But beyond all of this,

The most valuable thing that you’ll develop after training with us is CONFIDENCE.

You’ll have the confidence that you have the mental & physical strength to confront any obstacle in your life.

Given everything going on in the world, I realize this is a difficult decision. And again, if the tuition for this program causes financial anxiety, please don’t join this year. But if you’re in a position to make this happen, the question is not how much does it cost to join? The question to ponder – knowing the answer could change the trajectory of your life – is this:

👉 How much will it cost for nothing to change?

Ready to discover who you really are?
👉 Unlock Your Inner Spartan
(FYI: Enrollment only opens once a year and closes TONIGHT)

It’s time for your “Sliding Doors Moment.”

Are you going to capture it? Or just let it slip away?

Zack Arnold (ACE) is an award-winning Hollywood film editor & producer (Cobra Kai, Empire, Burn Notice, Unsolved, Glee), a documentary director, father of 2, an American Ninja Warrior, and the creator of Optimize Yourself. He believes we all deserve to love what we do for a living...but not at the expense of our health, our relationships, or our sanity. He provides the education, motivation, and inspiration to help ambitious creative professionals DO better and BE better. “Doing” better means learning how to more effectively manage your time and creative energy so you can produce higher quality work in less time. “Being” better means doing all of the above while still prioritizing the most important people and passions in your life…all without burning out in the process. Click to download Zack’s “Ultimate Guide to Optimizing Your Creativity (And Avoiding Burnout).”