There are some folks out there who are a little scary in their pursuit of excellence; they have an intensity about them that is damn near palpable. Randy Leavitt is one of those people.
Randy is known as a climber, one of America's best. With just a little bit of Googling you'll see just how good he is, but this podcast ain't about climbing, it's about the pursuit of excellence.
When I first heard about Randy it was from Greg Crouch, another guest on the Paleo Treats podcast. I had told Greg I was looking for more pursuers of excellence and Greg recommended Randy. When I asked why, Greg simply said, "Four decades of world class performance." Well, that just piqued my interest.
In this show we skip past a bunch of Randy's climbing history (well covered on episode 18 of Chris Kalous' podcast, The Enormocast) and go deeper into the pursuit of excellence. There's still plenty of climbing references and stories, but we kept it closer to a convo level that a non-climber can still enjoy.
Randy talks about what made climbing his first love, how he got into and out of BASE jumping (went off El Capitan in 1980!), when he found kite surfing and why he waited a couple of years before he actually started doing it.
Randy attributes a lot of his results to being a "delayed gratification-ist", something that most of us, including myself, need to work on developing.
We got into his passion for flying and some of the surprising things he had to learn as a pilot that he feels all climbers should know, along with why he stuck with motor planes and didn't get into sailplanes.
Of course I had to butt in and start yapping about paragliding, but I'd like to think I kept it to a minimum.
I took a couple of questions for this show from listeners, so you'll get to hear a bit about the Jumbo Love story, what goes through Randy's head when he's stepping into a true challenge, and of a clarification of his comparison between the best day climbing and the best day surfing.
Final note: I've changed the name of this podcast to The Nik Hawks Show and started a Patreon page after talking it over a bunch with Lee. I get that feeling that not all listeners of this podcast are Paleo or willing to drop more than $40 on cookies, but they still want to contribute. If that's you, head on over to the Nik Hawks Show Patreon Page and sign up.
Thanks a TON for doing that, I'm psyched and grateful that you're willing to throw in a few George Washingtons. See ya on the next show!
Too much reading...
How about dessert?