Barb McGrath 0:00
Our guest today, some would say, gee, she’s got it all. But there’s more to this story. Yes, she’s got a wonderful family, a great job, owns a business or one of the owners in a business, loves the work that she does has her health and fitness. But that wasn’t always the case. And that’s what we’re going to talk about today. Our guest, Carrie Bodie, ran her first half marathon in 2005, followed by a full marathon in 2006. She was in Boston, the year that the bombing happened. And there’s more to her story, but I’m gonna let her share that with you. So Carrie, welcome.
Cari Bode 0:44
Thank you. Great to be here.
Barb McGrath 0:46
It’s a pleasure to have you here.
Barb McGrath 0:47
So let’s start off on the business front. Tell me a little bit about the business that you’re a partner in and what you do.
Cari Bode 0:56
It’s South country equipment limited. We are a full line john deere dealership, we have eight locations across southern Saskatchewan, including Regina and moose, john weyburn, and some other surrounding communities. I’ve grown up in the business it actually I’m third generation. At this point how my grandfather’s had started the waiver dealership back in night taking over in 1965, my father took over the vagina one back in 78. And actually going back now to 2006, we merged to become from Watson tractor to become self control equipment with a couple of the family businesses that had some of the other surrounding stores as well.
Cari Bode 1:38
So over the last dozen plus years, we’ve grown to eight locations. And it’s basically still kind of a big, big family business, primarily, most of our partners involved my brother, my uncle, my husband, my cousin, and a couple others as well. So it’s really kind of exciting to see that way, we’ve grown to over 200 full time employees. And it’s just exciting to see all the changes that have taken place and industry. The egg industry is constantly evolving. I mean, there are those who see it as something that’s always been there and you know, always will be a key part of the economy in this province. But there’s so much that’s changed, especially in the last I find, anyway, 1520 years with technology. I mean, everything now going into all the guidance equipment, the ability for equipment to be able to, you know, to be with the telematics connected to some of these units, reporting back to our service departments, when something’s running a little warm, or it could be a mechanical breakdown coming, we can actually predict that coming and have technicians sending out sending out parts before things actually break down. It’s just there’s a lot of, you know, just the advancements that have taken place, there’s even some things that we’ve been working on as our own dealer group, we’ve developed an app that have called crop intelligence that allows us to, it’s really, it’s really kind of really cool how it works, we have a best place, but it allows soil moisture levels to be to interpret and collect the data based on the weather in the moisture in the ground.
Cari Bode 3:13
And it allows from there, we are able to predict water driven yield potential for dryland farming, which is kind of in that area. And we’ve been we’ve had that in the last few years. And it’s grown exponentially. And we’ve got these weather stations set out across western Canada and part of the northern states now and, and that’s just something we develop in house with our, you know, staff in Saskatchewan and been able to, you know, find that technology out. So it’s just one of the exciting things that I you know, I never would have imagined, you know, 20 some years ago.
Barb McGrath 3:45
That exactly will end and no one would have been able to imagine that right? You know, it used to be that that farming was small business. And that is not the case anymore. Farming is big business, in Western Canada and in North America. And depending on whether or not you’ve, you know, kind of ever touched farming. From a family perspective, everybody has a bit of a different understanding of it. But I’m married into a farm family and we don’t spend a ton of time on the farm. But even that’s been an education for me just, you know, kind of learning peripherally. So, ya know, that’s been quite interesting. So and agriculture has not always been a business where women were equally involved. So tell me about the the transition, you know, what was the conversation with mom and dad when you’re like, No, I’m going into the family business, even though it’s agriculture. How did that all happen?
Cari Bode 4:43
Well, you know, it’s kind of funny because I you know, when I I’ve been in Regina since the late 70s. And I went to University of Regina studied business admin there and my first goal wasn’t to jump back into the business. I did a few little things on my own. And, you know, I finally kind of got back in the door. I think I actually when I started right down at the bottom, and I was filling in, I think for maternity leave and reception and some basic accounting, and you know, and that was kind of where I got back in full time in the late 90s. And I worked my way up in the finance side of things and handled all the basic accounting and finance. And right now my primary role is in sales, administration management, handling all the paperwork and all the contracts and financing that comes in through for all of our eight locations.
Cari Bode 5:26
And so that’s kind of where my, my focus has always been kind of in the finance and administration side. But, you know, it’s, I mean, being a family business and where it’s at, I mean, your little part of everything. I mean, whatever things come up, and it’s just, I don’t know, I just I guess I’ve always known it. I mean, I said that. Back to day one, I, you know, I grew up knowing that you might get a call from a customer needing many parts or having a problem on during Christmas dinner, or could be, you know, and you just kind of realized that you’re sort of on call all the time, but there are so many good things that come with it.
Cari Bode 5:59
And I think the biggest part is the people. I mean, we have like fantastic people that we work with, and the relationships we have with our customers. And I that’s the part I really I really enjoy is, is that the relationships on that side of things? So you’re right, there aren’t a whole lot of women in agriculture. And I think before I’ve been at some events back in the past, where people look at me and ask, oh, so what does your husband do? And I’m like, Well, no, actually, I’m the one who works here. So it’s, it’s a, it’s a learning thing. And I think that’s a way that a lot of and a lot of a lot of industries that are recruited, you know, traditionally male, male managed, and you know, had user saw that sort of thing. But yes, yeah, exactly. But I think it’s changing. And, you know, we have more women in the business than we did 2030 years ago as well in different roles. I mean, so I think it’s exciting to see and, you know, the opportunity is there for, for both genders. And it’s, it’s just, it’s great to see exactly,
Barb McGrath 6:53
You know, I’m very fortunate to have the opportunity to talk with a number of the nominees this year for the YWCA awards of distinction. And one of the common threads that is evolving from these conversations is Howard traditional beliefs have really started to evolve in the last number of years, almost every woman that I talked to this year is filling some sort of non traditional role. And what I said to one of my guests was, we call it non traditional, when we think about industries where women didn’t comprise 50% of the workforce, how many years or generations will it be before we don’t make that differentiation? Where it’s it’s not about non traditional anymore, but it’s simply, you know, this woman is filling this role. Do you know what I mean?
Cari Bode 7:44
I do. I mean, I don’t think we’re there yet. I will, I really don’t. But I think we’re, I think we’re acknowledging that it’s, you know, that that that was a problem, I think is a is a big part of it. And it’s definitely making steps in the right direction. And I think it’s about, you know, opening doors and allowing, and I think those of us who are in roles that maybe aren’t always considered traditional need to, you know, be able to mentor and encourage others to step up and do the same thing, because it makes it easier, you know, all it takes is a door open and more people realize that there’s, you know, there’s a lot of opportunity out there.
Barb McGrath 8:17
Yes, I agree wholeheartedly. And, you know, I give so much credit to any woman who, you know, whatever…
Barb McGrath 8:24
role she’s in, and especially if you’re if you’re working full time you’re parenting right now, you know, we’re kind of on the coming on a COVID. Well, you’ve had to be the teacher and, and, and as women, we wear so many hats, not that men don’t, because men absolutely do as well. But you know, when something happens with a kid at school, like it’s not usually dad that gets the phone call, right?
Cari Bode 8:51
No, you’re exactly right. And it’s about having that, you know, the stability and ability to multitask and juggle. And there’s always been a lot of that. And I’ve been fortunate, I guess that’s one thing about being in a family business. I mean, I, I’ve always been able to juggle a bit for those first few years, when my kids were younger, I was able to work a little less, but I mean, in the same breath Now, the last number of years. I mean, when the kids night, they’re now 19 and 19 and 21. But I you know, they realize that, you know, there are times that I’m putting in 60 plus hour weeks, and that’s just the way it works so quickly. And it’s a business, you know, during seeding and harvest, that’s, that’s when you need to be on call. And that’s the nature of the business and, and I think they’ve learned that help learn that as well.
Barb McGrath 9:32
Yeah, no, I agree with you wholeheartedly. So um, let’s talk for a minute about some of the information we learned from the nomination with the YWCA. So you’re a business partner, but you’re also a mom and an avid fitness runner, but you had some health challenges in the last little while. So talk to us about running and how that is probably your happy place. And what’s happened the last couple years.
Cari Bode 9:57
Running is definitely my happy place. I was Never an athlete as a kid, and I sort of stumbled into it in, I guess, mid 2000s, around 2005 or so. And it was actually on a dare from a colleague of mine who said, You know, I think we could maybe run a five K, do you think he could do that? I you know, if you do it, I’ll do it. And you know, it was kind of, I was really nervous. It was totally out of my comfort zone is I was a kid with a, you know, always had a sprained ankle or twisted knee or something silly. And I was, like I said, I had no athletic skills whatsoever. And it was funny, it just kind of clicked, I ran that first race. And I think I placed in my age group. And I thought, wow, this is kind of fun. Yeah.
Cari Bode 10:37
And it was just surrounding yourself, I found that the running community in this city is phenomenal. And people just encourage you to, you know, push your boundaries, push your limits and try something new. And while you’re right, I, you know, within within another year and a half, I was I had run my first marathon and I was hooked. And then it was about getting a Boston qualifier. And, you know, so I, and you know, I’d run Boston few times, including the year of the bombing, and I met one of my dear friends there.
Cari Bode 11:02
And we went back and ran it the next year. And, you know, it all kind of spiraled from there. And I was working on finishing the five, or the six world marathon majors. And I was last, in October, Fall of 2018. I was about to do a few months, 10 weeks out from running Tokyo, which would have been my last one. And I had a just a little health issue that I something seemed a little off. And so I went to my doctor and found out that I it just out of the blue that I had this rare, aggressive cancer rhabdomyosarcoma, which is generally found in young children, and that was it.
Cari Bode 11:36
And it was that you needed major surgery within within a week, they were going to do surgery, and that within two weeks of that they would start what would be six to 12 months of aggressive chemo. And I sort of just kind of went, Wow, how am I supposed to kind of just stoplight for a year and but you know what, I it all it all worked out. For the best It was kind of I you know, my things turned out way better than anyone could have thought. And it was a rough rough spell there. I was, you know, after being someone who thrived on having my, you know, morning run every day or my workout at the gym, it went from all to zero like that.
Cari Bode 12:15
And I was, you know, it was six months later, and I was struggling just just to try to walk and but you know, it’s it’s coming back. So last year, I did my I walked to the 10 k at Queen’s City Marathon last September. And, and I’ve worked my way up, I did my first half marathon again in February, right before the COVID thing hit down in New Orleans. And, and yeah, so I’m still trying to train now and hopefully be able, I’m, I’m slow, but I’m getting back there.
Cari Bode 12:44
And I’m really excited. It’s just it. I have a new appreciation, I used to, you know, be more concerned about times. And right now it’s just, I get to do this. And I’m so excited that my body is letting me do these things again. So it’s, you know, it all it’s all kind of come full circle. And you know, my running community has been what, you know, my fav my friends that I’ve met through that were a lot of people who supported me through the whole cancer thing as well.
Cari Bode 13:09
So I’ve just, you know, it’s been wonderful. And I can’t say enough about, you know, the people I’ve met through running, it was through that, that I got involved with marathon matters. And I mean, about stepping outside of your comfort zone, sometimes I was at at the AGM several years back and my daughter, I dragged along with me because it was one of those days that I had had a busy day at work. And I didn’t want to leave her alone in the evening. So brought her along to the meeting.
Cari Bode 13:33
And well, she convinced me to step up and be president of the club, which I felt I was mostly 100 qualified for. But you know, it’s just like, She’s like, Well, why not? Mom, you could do that too. And did that for a few years. And it was, you know, I bet you know, it was just great directed a few races, and I just, it’s funny how, you know, you just sometimes have to step outside of your comfort zone a little and some of those decisions are the best ones you make.
Cari Bode 13:58
And I think I’ve learned a lot about, you know, leadership and, you know, relationships and working with people all through a lot of things. I’ve done volunteering as well. I’ve been involved with the Queen City Marathon organizing committee and board for a number of years to and once again, like I just can’t say enough about you know, surrounding yourself with people that bring you up and inspire you and it just, it just you know, you can do good things when you get people together that are like minded and you know, have a positive attitude and want to you know, want to do big things. It’s exciting.
Barb McGrath 14:32
Exactly. Um, when you when you started there, you talked about the majors and as someone who’s not a runner, that meant nothing. What does that mean?
Cari Bode 14:42
I’m sorry, it’s a it’s a it’s a it’s a running geek kind of thing. A lot of for a lot of runners, you know, running Boston, I think a lot of most people who don’t run have heard of the Boston Marathon and it’s kind of a, I guess the way I always like to think about it, it’s the it’s the every man’s Olympics.
Cari Bode 14:58
I mean, as a runner, If you if you can, it requires a qualifying time to be able to based on your age and gender at you to qualify to even enter. And if you kind of have can run a race at a at a qualifying event, which is another marathon that you run under a certain time, it’s always kind of considered one of those things that, you know, you know, I look at a sport, like if I, if I was, if I, I don’t know, if I was a football player, I wouldn’t, couldn’t see myself likely, you know, playing in the Super Bowl or the Grey Cup, but I mean, as a runner, everyone kind of has that opportunity to, you know, to strive and be able to have a chance to once you know, run it in the Boston Marathon, we’re the best in the world are out there, way ahead of you.
Cari Bode 15:39
But you’re in the same event the same day and kind of makes you feel like you know, you’re part of something special. And so to be able to run Boston is kind of a lot of runners kind of on their bucket list of a one day I’d like to do it. And kind of to go along with that. The world’s best that the elites that run Boston, there’s a series called the world marathon majors.
Cari Bode 15:59
And every year, I mean, the the elites that run it, there’s, there’s a prize purse of over a million dollars. And it’s you know, it’s definitely considered one of the biggest in road running one of the biggest events of our series out there. And for the every man out there, you can actually participate that if you can gain entry into the races and even just finish. I mean, you don’t have to be lightning fast, like the elites.
Cari Bode 16:22
But there’s a certain there’s a goal, you could have to run all six of these, which are Boston, Chicago, New York, and then Berlin, London, and Tokyo. And so this is kind of a it’s been a kind of a running over the last number of years, that means several of my friends had been trying trying to get our six stars. And when you finish, you get this really cool metal that that you get at the finish line is that so you’re on top of your metal for each event individuel that you get the six Star Medal for doing these six special races in the series.
Cari Bode 16:53
And so I was really I was I was quite crushed initially that I was going to have to had to forfeit my token. You entry back in 19, because I was because I was undergoing treatment. And and then this year, it the way it turned out, it was actually one of the first global events that the race was actually they canceled the race for the 40,000 people that were running it other than just the 200 or so elites, because of COVID. Right when it hit back in late February in Asia. And you know, since then, obviously, most everything globally has been canceled for the season this year.
Cari Bode 17:25
But so I’m holding out. I was offered entry for for 21 just last week, but I actually said I would defer just I’m not confident quite that by February of next year, the borders in the world to be quite opened up the way, the way that we’re hoping it will be I have a hunch we’re going to be another full year before we start to see the world that we the world that we once knew before. Everything kind of changed in the last few months. Yeah,
Barb McGrath 17:50
Yeah, we hear you. We had, we had some big travel plans for next year as well, a destination that we had, you know, wanted to go for a while. And yeah, same thing. I don’t think it’s happening. You know, I think our destination have to be a staycation. And that’s just the world that we’re in right now. Right. So, so obviously, your plan is to run competitively again, and make it a very significant part of your life again, to make the space for it.
Cari Bode 18:17
Cari Bode 18:18
Yeah. Hoping so.
Cari Bode 18:21
But like I said, I’ve learned to learn to adapt a little bit and just be happy to be to be able to get out there again, because I really missed it like that nine months or so that I wasn’t able to be doing much of anything. So yeah, it just I’ve, you know, I get to do it is supposed to, you know, there were some mornings I work I woke up and was overwhelmed. Like, I got to get out and do this. And it’s something I had to do. And now I just see it as a privilege that instead of sometimes just one more thing on the to do.
Barb McGrath 18:47
Exactly. You know, it’s it’s funny that you say that, because that’s one thing that I often talk to my own kids about is they’ll ask, and it’s just habit in their language, you know, do we have to this? And we do we have to do that? And I’m like, No, but you do get to. And you know, it hasn’t become habit for them yet. And it’s a little things like my daughter was on the volleyball team this past year. And, you know, I have to go to practice. And I would say no, you can’t take out a practice like this was a privilege because yes, at 13 like it doesn’t get any better than that in terms of what you get.
Cari Bode 19:22
Right? Exactly. 100%
Barb McGrath 19:25
Yep. And that’s Yeah, so we’re really working with the kids to train.
Cari Bode 19:32
I think we all need a reminder once in a while, I guess.
Barb McGrath 19:35
You know, we do and I mean, you grew up in small town, Saskatchewan. It sounds like and you know, Saskatchewan is home for me. I left for a number of years, but I came back and like we’ve got a pretty darn good here. You know, I think I’m a huge believer that if you don’t like it, leave because you’ll either come back and you’ll appreciate it or you won’t come back and that’s okay too because then we don’t have to You know, listen to somebody complaining about it. I live in Toronto, for just about well in the Toronto area for just about five years, and to be able to get places in seven minutes, like, Are you kidding? in Toronto, seven minutes down the block.
Cari Bode 20:19
People complaining if it’s 15 minutes to get across town or whatever it might be. And I said, you know, we’ve got a pretty good I, you know, I love the city. And I mean, I’ve really spent most of my life here. And I guess, part of the reason to, like, I’m now involved, I’m on the board with the Regina district Chamber of Commerce. And, you know, there are a lot of great people that are doing great things in the city, you know, investing here, setting up business here, you know, supporting community giving back, it is a great vibrant place to be. And I think some people kind of, you know, forget that, and you dwell on little negatives. And, you know, we do have a great city in a great community. And I’m happy to be here. And I think, I think a lot of people, sometimes you take it for granted, but you know, it is it’s a great place to be and a great place to work and to live and to raise a family.
Barb McGrath 21:06
And, you know, we’re all going to get out of it, what we put into it. And so if you want to find the negative, or if you want to find the problems, no, you might not have to look far, but if you want to see the good, and whether it’s in your community, in a person, in a situation, that’s what you’re gonna see. So, you know, it’s a bit of that self fulfilling prophecy, right? So,
Cari Bode 21:28
Barb McGrath 21:29
Tell me about how you’re balancing it. Now. Your kids are 19 and 21. So they, they require a little less supervision, and now they’re just really expensive, probably how you’re balancing it out, because you’ve definitely got to manage your health and your, you know, active in the business. So how are you doing it all carry?
Cari Bode 21:47
Well sometimes I struggle a little with balance, but you know, I find it’s part of that you got to pay yourself first. And I mean, I carve out time for my workouts first thing in the morning, every day, and I find I am just a more productive, happier person to be around, and what I can do that, you know, as opposed to a day where I think I’ve got too much to do, I should just get up and you know, roll out of bed at five and head straight to the office, it takes a toll I think on you mentally I mean, you need to do whatever it is, that thing is for you.
Cari Bode 22:15
For me, it’s running, I laugh because I have friends that would much rather be in the gym lifting or something instead and absolutely hate running, I said, but for me running is the one time where I can actually my head will actually clear and you know, I’ll have my brain is clean slate, and I’m ready to face face everything. And I just feel like a much more balanced person.
Cari Bode 22:35
And so that’s really important that I get that done first every day. It’s about, you know, just being organized. And, you know, trying, I struggle a little saying no once in a while, because I always I just find there’s so many things I want to do. And especially now i guess i think that’s right now probably my biggest challenge is I’m supposed to be still I’m not quite, I’m still dealing with some fatigue from from treatment. And I just find it so hard to not want to get back to do all the things I was doing before and you know, things come up.
Cari Bode 23:05
So I guess that’s one advantage of this whole pandemic has been that a lot of the social things in the world have all kind of stopped. So that’s allowed me a little more time, you know, to recharge a bit in the evenings and that sort of thing. But yeah, it is I think it’s just about you know, having focus, keep your eye on the big picture, it’s really easy to sometimes get caught up in the day to day and, you know, not stop and pause and you know, look, look further down. Where do you want to be? What do you want to be doing and set goals like don’t and don’t be afraid to set ones that seem a little unattainable, because it’s all a step by step process.
Cari Bode 23:38
And I’ve learned, you know, there are things that I never thought I would have been able to do that it just taken, you know, it’s a step by step, just, you know, put the goal ahead, and you can work your way toward it. And I think that’s an important thing to remember when you feel somewhat buried or, you know, lost a little bit.
Barb McGrath 23:55
Absolutely. Carrie, if you can believe it, we’re pretty much at a time already. Is there anything sort of in parting that you might like to leave with the audience? I think you’ve learned some big lessons in life in the last couple of years. Is there anything that you’d like to share with folks?
Cari Bode 24:11
I think just don’t be afraid to step outside of your comfort zone a little and to, you know, yes, setting goals and, you know, surround the best. I think the best thing I found is surround yourself with people with good people with people that bring you up that support you that encourage you that do great things. And I think if you surround yourself with the right people, it will bring you up and you’ll be able to bring others up as well. And it’s just being around people with the right attitude that you know, makes life makes life good.
Barb McGrath 24:42
Yeah, I agree wholeheartedly. Well, thank you for joining me today hearing about your story and your journey. Most of my guests you know come in and we we talk about nothing but business. But you know, our discussion today has really helped me appreciate that work. isn’t everything. Need to, you know, take the time to do the things that are important to us. So thank you for joining me, Carrie. I really appreciate it.
Cari Bode 25:06
Thank you so much for having me.
Barb McGrath 25:08
Absolutely. If you’d like to be a guest on the show, you can email me at Barb at Google girl.ta or reach out on Facebook and Instagram at Above the Fold. ca. And just a reminder when our shows are live, which unfortunately, they’re not right now. You can even submit questions in advance of the live show just on our Facebook page. I’m your host, Barb McGrath, local business owner and Google girl. Remember, you worked hard for your success. Don’t keep it a secret. Bye for now.
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