In today’s Success Story we talk with actor, author, and fitness pro. Jasson Finney. Jasson has written a great book, The Adventures of Captain Pump to help make fitness and exercise fun for kids. In this interview, we discuss success and raising healthy children.
About Jasson Finney
Whether he is helping people achieve life-changing fitness goals, entertaining them on TV and in film or inspiring young people to adopt a healthy lifestyle through his series of books, Jasson is passionate about making a difference in people’s lives.
As a teenager, Jasson flourished both as an athlete and drummer. After graduating from University in Human Kinetics, he dedicated many years to helping people achieve their fitness and health goals. He later returned to the world of entertainment as an actor and stuntman appearing in many feature films and TV shows.
His mission is to help and heal, teach and guide, entertain and create in film, literature, and fitness. If you had to sum him up in one word it would be “Big.” He is a big guy, with a big heart who has never stopped dreaming big.
Jasson on Fitness and Raising Healthy Kids
How did you get involved in fitness?
I have always been active and into sports. I started skating at the age of three and was playing competitive hockey by the age of five. Later I started training for sports in the off-season before such organized programs existed. I would turn my parent’s garage into a gym and the backyard into an obstacle course.
The natural progression was to start helping others which I did in my late teens. Shortly after that I became a trainer and pursued the scientific framework at University where I graduated in Human Kinetics.
We often discuss the connection between success and fitness, how has fitness factored into your success?
As I mentioned, I was always into fitness. As a result, everything I did professionally factored and continues to factor into it today. My physicality has always been my calling card so to speak.
Most roles I am cast in are heavily based on my looks and physical abilities. Living a healthy lifestyle is par for the course. Keeping in good shape is always priority number one.
You recently launched a new book The Adventures of Captain Pump can you tell us a little about the book?
Yes! I am so excited about the book. It’s been a labor of love for many years, and finally, I have been able to share it with the world. The story is about an elementary school janitor who finds a fitness superhero from a magical land to help get kids in the real-world to become fit, healthy, confident and kind to one another.
This is the first of a series of books that will tell the continuing stories and take kids on fun-filled adventures through its pages. Kids will love them for the entertaining characters and numerous villains that threaten Pumpland’s healthy way of life. Parents will love the books for their lessons and wholesome teachings that kids and adults could use alike.
The Adventures of Captain Pump is a great book to help parents raise healthy kids, what inspired you to write it?
Thank you so much, I am so happy you like it. One day I worked on a TV show with a cast of kids playing a mystical character in make-believe land. I had so much fun working with all these young and enthusiastic actors.
The experience stuck with me. As well, while I would train my clients, they often would tell me stories about their kids and their fitness dilemmas. Soon after that, I found myself sitting at my computer and Captain Pump was born.
What tips do you have for parents to help them raise healthy and fit children?
Kids tend to learn through observation and by example. They are like sponges soaking up all they see and hear. And of course, kids love to play. So play, be active with them. Get down on the floor and crawl around. Make a fort and pretend you must save the universe together. Most of all have fun with your kids!
Remember that for your young kids, you the parent are their superhero. They watch your every move and try to emulate you even at an early age. So, if you want a fit and healthy child, show them a fit and healthy way. And if you need a hand, Captain Pump is here to help you all “save the day the healthy way!”
What advice would you have for people that are having difficulty maintaining their fitness or finding time to exercise?
Fitness is not a short-term goal. It is a long-term journey that requires a commitment with many peaks and valleys. In other words, you will have your ups and downs but to achieve long-term results, you need to stay committed to yourself. It’s something that must become part of who you are so you can “be” the person that you aspire to. So, if you feel down or discouraged, recommit and then simply re-engage in the process. It gets better if you stay on the rollercoaster.
What is the most significant thing you think holds people back in their fitness and exercise goals?
The biggest thing is they easily get discouraged when the unrealistic desired goals are not quickly achieved. What do I mean by that? A lot of people think that they will achieve an Adonis-like body in a few short weeks or at the most a few short months.
That, unfortunately, is not realistic. What is realistic is losing some body fat and gaining some muscle tone. So, my advice is to take it in increments and set short term objectives that are realistic and attainable within the timeline you set for yourself. Then you can recommit to a new objective that will get you closer and closer to achieving that Adonis-like physique. Remember, stay on the rollercoaster.
Jasson on Acting and Success
How did you get started with acting?
You could say I naturally fell into acting. I was personal training a client who happened to be a talent agent. She thought I had a look that may be marketable and suggested I give it a try. I agreed, and on my first, ever audition was for X Files.
I got a callback that was foreign to me at that time, so when I walked into the audition room for the callback, I was blown away and terrified at the same time. As I stood on my mark a table full of execs and producers lead by the creator Chris Carter stare at me. I didn’t get the part, but it was enough to get me hooked.
What does a typical day look like?
Very early. I am in the gym by 5:30 AM work with clients till noonish. Then I usually have a meeting with my team as we have a lot of projects in the works, including a massive Captain Pump website, I then find time for my own workout which is a combination of many protocols from lifting to sprints. In the evening I usually have some writing to do and enjoy cooking a nice dinner to unwind. I cook every night. That is what a typical day looks like when I am not on set.
What is one thing you have learned from being successful?
Success is a barometer measuring one’s ability combined with timing and a little luck. What I learned is that without any one of the three, success becomes the “process” until the stars align, and you meet the three necessary criteria at the same time.
That could be anywhere along your journey…the important thing is never to stop the journey. If you still believe and work continuously on improving your abilities, the opportunity will come your way, and with any luck, you’ll be successful.
Is there a mistake you have made starting out that you wish you could change?
Absolutely. Life is about making mistakes, and I have made my share. As a result, hopefully gaining wisdom and learning what not to do to the first time. In other words, mistakes will always be, and if you don’t repeat them, you’ll eventually find the right combination to aligning the three necessities to succeed.
Would I change the path if I could? That’s always a tricky question most often answered by “wouldn’t change a thing.” However, I can think of a few instances that had I made a different choice, my path to success may have been shorter or maybe not.
What advice would you give someone starting out?
Commit to yourself – to better yourself, to believe in yourself and to be yourself. Committing to yourself is the first step to achieving the necessary ability for success.
Once you have made that commitment, the journey will not cease should you encounter an obstacle that seems impossible. What I’m saying is don’t take the easy way out when you are on the downside of an achievement. If you stay on the rollercoaster, it will climb again. If you get off, the ride is over. So, don’t get off ride it out and before you know it, you’ll be climbing again.
What are you most proud of?
I am extremely proud of finally releasing my children’s book series. It took a long time to align the three necessities, but they finally did. I stayed on the rollercoaster, and now the ride will just get better and better with more intricate maneuvers and faster loops. That being said, I hope to inspire and motivate a new generation to stay on the rollercoaster of life and live a fit and healthy one too.
Is there something you learned from the industry that you found surprising?
Yes. Like any other industry, if you haven’t committed to believe, better and be yourself, you will get chewed up and spit out. So, learning to commit and then re-commit when the outlook looks bleak is an important tool to have in your tool belt. It makes all the difference.
Do you have any tips for people trying to write or get into acting?
If you want to write, start writing. It is the most personal and easy form of expression to engage in. There is no limiting factor. Only your imagination and a keyboard that can take you anywhere you want to go. Acting is the art form that brings those writings to life through your imagination.
Take a course, a workshop, attend plays and watch good movies that have something to teach and characters to learn from. I would say that’s a good start.
If you could recommend a book to help people be more successful what would it be, and why?
The one I would recommend most is “How to Win Friends and Influence People” by Dale Carnegie. It teaches you how to communicate and relate to people, something we can all use a bit more of these days.
Has social media played a role in your success?
Social media is here to stay, and whether you like it or not, it is a necessary element to building a brand. So yes, I see the role it plays and as the brand grows, so does the need for social media presence.
What does your social media strategy look like, any tips?
I post when I see fit or have something useful to share. However, I see so many self-proclaimed gurus making a mess of the fitness industry, with inaccurate information and exercise techniques, I have been mulling over starting my own podcast to help the kids.
Any mistakes you see people routinely make with social media?
Yeah posting bad videos and information.
Where can people connect with you online?
My Instagram is @jassonfinney
Do you have any apps, books or tips that you use to be more productive?
I have another concept that I created called:” Business Athlete” It shows people how to be more productive and become a champion by living like an athlete. This will be my next book release, but the whole concept is online at www.businessathlete.com.
I use it for corporate clients that are looking to get an edge on their competition. It’s an excellent tool for anyone looking to be a better leader for themselves giving them the ability to lead others more proficiently.
You are into fitness, acting, writing, how do you manage time?
I only do what I love and believe that quality of life is priceless. So being that I love what I do, I am always doing something related to fitness, acting, and writing. So, managing my time only becomes necessary given what area is taking precedence at that time. Like right now, I am working on this extensive Captain Pump website which will become a portal for kids learning which I can’t wait to share with all of you. Then I will soon take a break and go get a workout in.
What is the best advice you have received?
To always be true to yourself.
Any cool projects you are working on?
Let’s see. Well, the Captain Pump website that is in the works will be amazing! It will encompass a game that teaches kids about the world around them, how to be fit and live a healthy lifestyle. Yes, it will be a game so stay tuned.
What is the one thing you wish everyone knew?
That everyone knew or put into practice?
Because I think there is a lot that people know but simply don’t do such as eating well and exercising. Everybody knows that the ticket to good health is a proper diet and regular exercise. I wish everyone would realize how much their life would improve if they were fit and healthy.
Anything I should ask that I have not?
Well, you could have asked me how’s my day going? LOL It’s going great thanks ?
Who can bench more The Thing or The Hulk?
The Hulk but Captain Pump benches more than him ?
Thank You for joining us
Thank You, Jasson, for this great interview! Raising Healthy kids and getting them excited about exercise can be a challenge. The Adventures of Captain Pump is a great resource for parents trying to encourage healthy living.