“There is something about the outside of a horse that is good for the inside of a man.”
Sir Winston Churchill
Hi, we are Mike and Tessie Hess. Together we have worked hard to realize our dream that is the Stride Out Brand. Both born and raised in the Midwest, we’ve set our roots in Ohio. It’s here that we have decided to raise our two daughters. Growing up in rural America allowed us to flourish in the farming and ranching community. We both were taught early on that any structure can only ever be as strong as the foundation upon which it is built. Luckily for us our families saw to it that our foundations were strong as any. We were literally given the recipe for success. Callused hands, worn boots, and a sweat stained bible can take you as far in this life as one ever dares imagine. These are not new ideals. On the contrary, these ideals come from the core values that built America. Values such as pride in what a man can accomplish with just good ole grit, perseverance in the face of crippling adversity, and raising a family that stands for the flag and kneels for the cross.
We were drawn to each other through these shared values as well as our love of our equine partners. We realize that nothing that is worth doing is easy. It takes a relentless attitude and unwavering faith to overcome the adversities and hardships that present themselves to us all. We have worked diligently to build this brand with a single mission. A mission to ignite the fire that burns within others so that they too may unlock their full potential. They too can push back against fear and doubt. They too can Stride forward into a new world awaiting them where no dream is too big! Stride Out Brand truly is a way of life. We welcome each one of you to begin your Stride Out Journey today!
Tessie grew up on a horse. Her entire family was deeply rooted in the equine industry. They bred, raised, and competed with just about every type of horse at just about any discipline you could think of. By three years old Tessie was already in the show ring riding like a natural.
By the time she graduated high school Tessie was already a very accomplished horseman. So, to challenge herself further she became an exercise rider at a thoroughbred track continuing to hone her skillset. Her amazing abilities are a product of years of diligence, hard work, and sacrifice. She sought out knowledge and advice from anyone she could to grow as a horseman. Veterinarians, professional trainers, blacksmiths, even the groomers and stable hands were sources of learning. She had the vision to realize that each of these people served a valuable purpose and possessed a necessary knowledge. Knowing it could be harnessed to broaden her abilities as a horseman and a person. Tessie has a get back on the horse no matter how hard you fall attitude. This was deeply rooted into by her hero, her loving father. She has never strayed from this way of thinking in anything she has done. She represents the gold standard of what it means to live the Stride Out lifestyle!
My upbringing, on the other hand wasn’t horse specific. We always had a couple ranch horses but nothing fancy. It wasn’t until much later I had the opportunity to work with some of the best trainers in the country.
I grew up in a very matter of fact, sink-or-swim family. We raised beef cattle and had a small swine operation. I was mentored by my two heroes in life, my father and my grandfather. They taught me the secret to life. Which I have found is the secret to everything we do. The secret is, there is no secret. We are simply a product of our own mindset.
My grandpa grew up farming hundreds of acres with dozens of draft horses. To say he was a horseman would be an understatement. I believe that it was his understanding of the horse that helped him to understand people too. He would often tell me “Remember son, man or beast makes no difference. Respect is never owed to you. Respect must be earned through hard work. Once you get that respect, you’re gonna have to work even harder to keep it.”
I am still a bit taken back by the brilliance of that statement. I believe this is largely due to the absolute simplicity it.
The Fire Within
We at stride out believe in the ongoing conquest of knowledge and skill that is required to achieve greatness. We realize that nothing worth having comes easy. We accept the challenge to look hard within ourselves and charge forth into the unknown. With the Stride Out attitude there truly is no limit to how far we can go. It is our passion to ignite the fire within others which we have ignited inside ourselves. We do not accept the status quo and we are here to set the tone! We will prove that with the right mindset, life truly is limitless. We will not fail. We will not falter. From this moment forth we encourage everyone that is ready to change their life to accept our challenge. Leave the past to the procrastinators and step forth into the new world awaiting you. We don’t walk, we don’t run, we will always Stride Out in life. No dream is too big, no journey to long. Never give up and Never Hold Back!