Patrick Fellows is a 5 time Ironman, TEDx giving, 32 miles swimming, endurance coaching, healthy cooking, entrepreneur and musician.  Born in Dearborn, MI, raised in Mississippi and a Louisianian for 30 years, 



I have long been a proponent of starting. Of simply doing something to get moving.

Without over dramatizing, 2018 was an immensely hard year for me, but really, aren’t all years for someone? Where one person triumphs another feels defeat and loss. It’s just how it is. So again. I am starting.

Somewhere in the last couple weeks, I made a list of the successes and failures of the last year. I tried to keep it completely objective. What would most of the world think if they got to do “x” or “achieve y”. Lo and behold, one of the hardest years of my life had far more ups than downs.

Over the last year, a non tested theory about the human mind and condition has come to the forefront of my thoughts, partly because I’ve dealt with it a lot more this year than not. “What if depressed is the mental default?” Followed closely by, “more people are depressed than aren’t.”

Any time I publicly stated I was troubled this past year, inevitably a friend would reach out and say “thanks for being honest about this. It helped me.” My close friends and family were worried for me as I worked through the most recent downturn, and questioned why I chose to do it publicly. I can’t say for sure why, other than that’s my way. I chalk it up to equal parts belief in being transparent with people that all isn’t as it seems, as well as probably attention seeking in some way. I write to work through things. I throw it out into the ether and keep moving.

As I went through the year objectively, I was amazed at how little I celebrate the positives and how much energy I put into every one of the negatives. I constantly tell people to celebrate their victories, however small, as it builds a positive mindset as well as momentum, yet I spent a majority of the last few years doing the exact opposite. Downplaying and glossing over any “success” as an expectation of normal. Dwelling on any defeat as the end of everything. Classic.

“There’s a fine line between confidence and douchebaggery.”


If the above statement is true (which it 100% is) AND if we are mostly prone to depression and negativity, then how do we go forward and celebrate the wins in life? That’s the $100 question for today. The first thing you are going to have to come to terms with is that by celebrating the wins, you are automatically going to be going directly against our cultures negative default, and there are going to be people that dislike you because of it. Thems the rules. I just work here. That being said, the haters gonna hate you no matter what you portray, so tough for them. Our culture is negative. We all relish in the failures of others at some point. You’re lying if you say you don’t. I guess it’s a coping mechanism and I’m not judging you for this. Don’t worry though, I am judging you for your poor music choices.

As this new year approached, I found myself in a unique position in that I decided I would start anew in January. I even thought i would start on the first but really, the first isn’t any different than the second. In actuality, I started making slow progress on training a week before Christmas. A simple swim, bike or run every day. But nothing too crazy. No races planned. Just thoughts on which ones I’d like to do.

Slow deliberate planning with a patience for my wandering mind. A commitment to not being over critical of how scattered my brain can be. Slowly, I am making positive changes. Less do or die resolutions than “more days than not I will be better.”

I am forcing myself through a lens of objectivity and honesty while letting the focus ebb and flow to how my mind works, persistent though, to keep coming back to the steps needed to improve.

The changes I want are no different than most of yours. Drink less, eat better, go faster, be a better husband, father, friend, Coach and business owner. Make a positive mark on the world. But this year I’m trying to look at my so called flaws as also the reasons for my ample success. I can’t have one without the other and neither can you. What we can do is do. If we are honest we all have more to be.

Hugs and hi 5s.