Balancing the Grind with John Pownall, Musician & Personal Trainer

John Pownall is a musician, speaker, personal trainer, disability carer, and on his way to becoming a firefighter.

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1) To kick things off, could you tell us a little about your career background and current role?

I’m currently a musician, speaker, personal trainer, disability carer and very soon I’ll be becoming a firefighter if all goes as planned. I am the definition of giving everything a go until you find something that fits!

2) What does a day in the life look like for you? Can you take us through a recent workday?

My days vary day to day and I like it that way however my only non negotiables are exercise and doing something to benefit/level up my music.

Last week I found myself caring for my disability clients then heading to a school to perform, run rap writing workshops and then even doing some consulting work for a local grocery chain (random right?) whilst doing my usual training and adding in extra for the upcoming firefighting physicals.

If was to outline a “typical” day for me it would look like this, in no particular order:

Disability work, 45-90 Minutes in the gym, Ride/Run for 10-120 minutes, Write/Record music and three meals a day making sure I hit my macros.

Since my days vary, my sleeping patterns will vary depending on what the day requires of me. Sometimes I set myself up for more creative success if I sleep in a little, other days I’m up early and getting it in, I’m definitely different to the “Sleep standards” set by most entrepreneurs.

I wake up anywhere from 6am-10am and sleep anywhere from 10pm-2am and manage to make it work for me, since every day is different for me I listen to my body and try to sleep as little or as much as I need.

3) Does your current role allow for flexible or remote working? If so, how does that fit into your life and routine?

My whole life is designed currently to leave me with enough flexibility for my passions. If at any moment I feel I need more time for music or anything else I will tweak “work” hours to accommodate. I want control over my hours as that’s true freedom in my eyes.

4) What does work-life balance mean to you and how do you work to achieve that goal?

Work life balance to me means that I’m not burning out. Specifically from whatever I’m doing for work and making sure I still have ample time to pursue what makes me happiest.

Time is my most precious currency which I can’t get back, So I spend it wisely. Work life balance also means being able to say no without feeling guilty as self care is incredibly important to that balance.

Order our Daily Routines ebook today! Featuring first-hand interviews, insights and revelations compiled from 50 of the world’s most successful people.

5) In the past 12 months, have you started or stopped any routines or habits to change your life?

I stopped spending money on material, pointless things for momentary happiness and started investing more into my own knowledge (audiobooks, study) and financial future (investments).

6) Do you have any favourite books, podcasts or newsletters that you’d like to recommend?

  • Can’t Hurt Me: Master Your Mind and Defy the Odds by David Goggins
  • The Joe Rogan Experience Podcast
  • Tools of Titans by Tim Ferris
  • It’s All in Your Head by Russ

7) Are there any products, gadgets or apps that you can’t live without?

I can live without anything but I do enjoy my:

  • Google Keep – writing music
  • Spotify – music
  • Audible – audiobooks
  • YouTube – podcasts, documentaries
  • Strava – tracking my runs and rides
  • Kayo – sport
  • My Fitness Pal – tracking my nutrition

8) If you could read an interview about work-life balance by anyone, who would that be?

J. Cole.

9) Do you have any last thoughts on work, life or balance that you’d like to share with our readers?

Do what you love, life’s too short for anything else. If you can’t do what you love all the time, do it for at least some of the time. And if you’re like me and love multiple things, do them all! It may make life chaotic (which I sorta like) but it saves losing interest in one thing by overdoing it.

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Order our Daily Routines ebook today! Featuring first-hand interviews, insights and revelations compiled from 50 of the world’s most successful people.
About Author

Balance The Grind gives me a platform to talk to these people about how they're achieving their ideal lifestyle. I'm inspired by the passion, the work ethic, the hustle; and these conversations motivate me to live life the way I want to live it.