He might have the coolest job on the planet. He is literally in charge of the circus. Johnathan Lee Iverson is the Ringmaster for Ringling Bros. and Barnumn & Bailey. He travels all over the world, but you might have seen him in action when he and the circus stopped at the World Arena in the spring of 2010. But life on the road with his family and a crazy performance schedule has made fitness even more important for Johnathan. Here’s how he lives a FIT LIFE, while being part of the Greatest Show on Earth.
Stacia: First off – what a cool job. Ring Master! What’s a regular day like for you, as Ringmaster of The Greatest Show on Earth?
Johnathan Lee Iverson: There is no "regular day," that's what makes it the greatest gig on earth. My "regular day" is expecting the unexpected.
Stacia: How important is fitness in what you do? You obviously have to have LOTS of energy!
JLI: You are obviously too kind. My energy is the public. We have the The Greatest Fans On Earth. I have gone into shows dog tired, only to be lifted by our great fans. Physical fitness goes with the job. You can't be surrounded by the world's most elite artistic athletes and not be inspired. However, mental fitness is perhaps more important due to the unpredictable nature of our business.
Stacia: And for your job, you actually travel by train! What’s that like?
JLI: Traveling on the great American circus train, the largest privately owned train in the world is perhaps the most endearing part of this entire adventure. America is beautiful and there is no better way to see her. What can be cooler than an ever changing "backyard." Last week it was Disney World, the next it's the Garden of the Gods.
((Here's a pic when Johnathan appeared on KKTV last year!))
Stacia: With your hectic schedule and your life on the train, how on EARTH are you able to keep fit?
JLI: The show itself is a workout. The key is to find your "thing." Some of us, bike to and from work and around the city. Some us are serious runners and will run a number of marathons during the touring season. Some of us, even our children, take classes with our master acrobats and martial artists. Myself and others workout to a very popular and very good fitness program about 3 to 5 times a week. It helps to have others suffer with you.
Stacia: You’ve recently been trying to re-focus on your health. Tell us about that.
JLI: Fitness for me is more than about my personal vanity, I do have to be conscious of my actual health. Last I checked my cholesterol levels were not where I'd like them to be and I have to always be cognizant of my iron intake.
Stacia: So what are your goals from here to stay healthy?
JLI: My goal is to create a lifestyle which includes a fitness program and diet plan that are suitable for my specific health needs.
Stacia: What would you say to others out there who are doing their best to fit fitness into their schedule, but sometimes struggle?
JLI: One size does not fit all. One of the biggest mistakes is that we covet and thus pursue journeys that are not designed for our particular make up. Therefore, find what works for you in diet and fitness, especially diet. An effective workout is not so much about quantity as it is about quality. Most of us are not going to be circus stars, so you don't need 4 to 6 hours in the gym. We mere mortals can get what we need inside 20 minutes to an hour a day.
Johnathan is currently the voice for the 142 edition of Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey entitled Dragons. You can find him on facebook or follow him on twitter: @BigTopVoice