If you’re an athlete then you know how hard it can be to continue your training year in and year out. Do you ever ask yourselves why you’re still doing what you’re doing? Every athlete has asked themselves this question every once in a while. What’s motivating you still? Do you have decreased motivation? If you are hitting a wall in your athletic career, maybe I can help you push past it. It’s not only athletes who need the motivation to get through their workouts. Take a moment and take a step back, think about that first moment you said to yourself you wanted to do this.
Remember why you started. Did you start your fitness journey because you wanted to look a certain way? Did you start because your friend asked you to join? If you’re an athlete, start with your earliest memory of the sport. Did you love the sport from an early age? Was it a bonding experience between you and a parent? Your friend loved it so you decided to join in and soon after you fell in love too. Now, think about what has pushed you all these years? Was it the love for the sport still and even the second family you’ve found (your team). Your team is an extension of the family at this point, you’ve spent countless hours together, training. Even your friendly gym-goers have become a second family. You see them many times a week, root for each other and care for one another. They’ve held you up during your highs and carried you through your lows.
Speaking of lows, during your athletic career, I’m sure you’ve encountered losses here and there. How do you get through them? My advice is that it’s in the past, you can’t change the past. You can learn from your mistakes and move forward. You need to focus on what you need to do to get to your goal, which is to win the game or swim the fastest in the race. We need to accept our failures and hiccups in order to focus on the future. Failing is part of the process for your goals. All athletes have hit a slump or two in their careers. Use your setbacks as motivation to get to where you want to be. Flip your decreased motivation like the New England Patriots. The Patriots, for example, they’ve been in a lot of Super Bowl games, but they haven’t won all of them. They use their loss and push themselves to train harder, to be better next year. Not always, but in the last ten years, the Patriots have participated in five of those games. That’s astounding, considering there are teams that haven’t played once, let alone five times in the last ten years. Are you reading this going, well I’m not an athlete what failures can I have? What if you’re not reaching that mile time you were once able to get to, you didn’t lose those extra pounds or you weren’t consistent with your regimen. Use them to motivate yourself to keep going, keep pushing and keep exercising!
Those who win are not the perfect athlete, they try their best. Prepare your physical and mental self. Give yourself the best possible conditions for a successful athletic career. If you practice and train according to your schedule, then you are giving yourself the best possible outcome. All that anyone, including yourself should ask of you is to do your best. Your mentality can define how you act. You hear the phrase:
“You either have it or you don’t.”
If you listen to that then you’ll never want to fight through your rough patches. When you fail you’ll think you don’t have it and give up, but you shouldn’t. Tell yourself that you do have what it takes, you have the mental strength to bounce back from your downfall. When you fail, you’ll want to give up, but remind yourself that one step back is not the end for you. One step back and two steps forward.
Tell yourself encouraging thoughts. You’ve gotten this far, so why give up now? Are you a swimmer who has just broken their own record in a specific swim, but now you can’t get any better. Think to yourself, I did it once, I can do it again! If someone has a fast time that beat yours, ask yourself why not you? Why can’t you be the person to beat that record. All athletes have the chance to beat a world record, so why is that person not you? In the end, you can only do your best and your best is all you can do.
“It’s hard to beat a person who never gives up.”