I don’t know about you, but in the past two weeks I have been obsessed with watching all of the Olympic games! I love being able to watch the best athletes in the world compete at what they do best. The hard work, passion and dedication that all the Olympic athletes possess are very special to watch. As I watch all the big name athletes such as Michael Phelps,
to name a few, I am infatuated with the emotions on their faces. Yes, I do love watching them win gold medals, but I am even more intrigued during the semi-finals or prelim races that take place before the athletes compete in the gold medal finals. It is during the prelims and competitions before the big finale that you see the gold medal athletes truly show off their “Why’s”. What I mean by their why’s is that the athletes all compete for something they posses inside them. This is called intrinsic motivation. When Gabby Douglas qualified for the women’s all around final she did not jump for joy and run to hug her coach, she was cool and collected, it was like she expected to be where she was. The same is for Jordan Burroughs during his quarter final and semi-final matches. He didn’t go nuts on the mat and celebrate, he got his hand raised, looked up to the stands to see his mother and then he went right back to business and prepared for his next match. Jordan and Gabby had a why!! They wanted to achieve a gold medal for something that motivated them from inside more than anybody in the world!!
What I am trying to get to is that each of these athletes had extreme measures of intrinsic motivation during the Olympic games. This intrinsic motivation is rare and unique, but can be found in all of us. Everyone is able to achieve success beyond measures they ever thought existed, but the first step is to have something that drives you inside. I come to work every day and give everything I have because I want to become the best personal trainer/coach in the world. Every morning I wake up I am driven by this intrinsic motivation and it keeps me going when things get tough.
I see a ton of people in and out of the gym every day. If you have been in one of my classes you probably have noticed that I like to joke around and have fun sometimes. While I like having a good time with my clients, I love to see when my clients go from laughing to a straight face, “let’s get after it face” that screams determination. That is the look where the person knows the reason why they woke up early and why they are at the gym. These people I see have their WHY! These people I am describing have intrinsic motivation which means that they want to lose weight, get stronger or just feel better for themselves. I am not saying that losing weight for other people is bad or wrong, but I am saying that if you want long lasting benefits of exercising, you need to have something that motivates you from within. You need to have a WHY.
As you drive to the gym, take some time and really think about why you are doing what you do. Find something that really motivates you to lose weight and be healthier. This could be a number of things such as I want to be able to do yard work without feeling like I just killed my body, or maybe you want to have the body you had when you were in college, etc. Find a reason for yourself, not others and keep this in your mind while you exercise. The Olympic athletes that we have been able to witness this summer prove that once you find your why, there are no limits to what you will do until you reach that goal. Find your WHY!!