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On Motivation

Sometimes, motivation can be in scarce supply. Consider these questions honestly: are you the kind of athlete who doesn’t spend time working on mobility because you’re content with your squats being half-depth? Or who doesn’t bother working on improving your upper body pulling strength because you’re content to use the same band for assistance every time you do pull ups? You’re settling for mediocrity, and you should treat yourself better.

There can be a large gap between a person’s desire to be better and his/her motivation to do things that will make him/her better. When push comes to shove, even people who sincerely desire to get better at something will often find it easier to do nothing rather than take steps to effect change. The good news is there are a number of things you can do to structure your life in such a way that you do not have to be entirely reliant on internal motivation.

The easiest, and often most effective, thing to do is use people around you for motivation. Pay attention to your environment: who has what you want? Who works really hard? Who do you admire, who do you want to emulate? Find people who are better than you, and start trying to be like them instead of settling for your current level (of fitness or anything else). Just as boats rise with the tide, intentionally surrounding yourself with people who work really hard will lift you up to a higher level.

Building in accountability is also incredibly helpful. Tell people in advance what workouts you are planning to do in the next few days, which movements you need to work on; find a training partner; enlist one of the coaches for support.

Ultimately, it comes down to your community. If you surround yourself with motivated people who work hard, they will help inspire you to put in the work that will make you better. CrossFit is great for this because no one works out alone; you’re surrounded by people of all levels, many of whom are likely better than you at something. We can provide the community, but you have to actively engage with it. Don’t sell yourself short and settle for mediocrity. Strive to make yourself better, even if it’s just at one thing. Don’t use a lack of motivation as an excuse; go out and enlist other people to help you find some!

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