Tuesday, May 27, 2014

What's Your Carrot?

There are many cliches when it comes to health and fitness. Some hold a definite truth while others just sound good when they roll off the tongue. Either way, they serve a purpose - they are designed to motivate you. The biggest obstacle to pursue that motivation is you.

Motivation will challenge you.  It will kick you when you are down. It will laugh at you when you fail. It will spit in your face when you quit. But most of all it will reward you when you succeed. Motivation feeds off itself. But in order to feed, it has to be nourished by it's motivator - YOU!

Like so many things in life, it's a vicious cycle. Your health and fitness need to balance each other. They need to compliment one another in several ways. It's difficult to be healthy if you starve yourself. It's difficult to be healthy if you eat foods which don't fuel your body and your mind.  If your body is injured, it's challenging to perform any type of physical exercise. Health and fitness is give and take. It's a relationship. At times, it takes - it takes time, it takes effort, it takes money. Later, it's a giver - it gives you an endorphin high, a healthy heart, a sense of accomplishment.

Yet, we struggle. We struggle on a daily basis to do right by our mind and body. We know what we should do and we know why we should do it - only to put it off another day. It's not going to be any easier tomorrow.  But it will get easier once we actually start the process. If you never start, how will you know?

It's not easier for me because I've been doing it a long time. I struggle more than most would think even though I've been an athlete since I was a young child.  I don't have any special talents or skills which make me genetically gifted.  I work my butt off. But I have bad days, bad weeks and even a bad year. I argue with myself in the morning before my workout. I try to negotiate when else I can schedule it into my day if I sleep just 15 minutes longer. One more missed workout isn't going to matter. But then one turns into two and then the chocolate candy rears it's ugly head...just one piece. My mind wins the battle because I know how I WILL feel later when I have used my motivation to get done what needs to be done. And I also know how I will feel if I DON'T get it done.

Motivation. You need to hunt it down.  You need to harness it.  Don't tame it because you will need it to be the beast within you. You will need motivation to kick you around when you can't do it yourself. Motivation is your enemy and your best friend.  Keep motivation alive because your life depends on it.

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