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  • Writer's pictureJakki Flaherty

What Revs Your Engine?

When thinking about what gets us going, and what keeps us going, I think it can be broken down into three parts. Inspiration, Motivation, and Action. Followed by repeated action if everything goes according to plan. I'll break it down a little further and give you some food for thought.

Inspiration: This is the easy part. Think of the feeling you get after any major sporting event or athletic performance (like Cirque De Soleil) you have ever attended. It is that feeling when you leave that makes you say to yourself "I need to take a tennis lesson, that was so inspiring." Or "wow, I wish I could move my body as gracefully as those dancers."

Motivation: Where reality kicks in. What hold you back from actually calling and booking that tennis lesson or dance class? Are you too busy? Do you have self-doubt that even with practice you could never be good enough? Or did that euphoric feeling post-event simply fade? An important step in setting any good exercise goal is to know what motivates you and how you are motivated, and to be honest about that reason. I think some people are embarrassed if their goal is to look better naked, but I would argue that anyone who doesn't have that as part of their goal when they start a new fitness endeavor is lying. Your goal can be as small as trying to get off the floor without using your hands, or as grand as running a triathlon, but if you don't find that internal motivation, your goal won't mean much. For me, it is about feeling good in my body and feeling strong. I like the feeling of being strong enough to tackle most things that come my way.

Action: Once you have made the call, booked the class, and actually shown up, you are creating action. The big question is can you stick with the action? Sometimes our expectations and realities don't match up and that is ok, but don't let that hold you back from getting out there and trying something new. The goal is that your excitement about your new activity is enough to help you create consistent action. This ties back into motivation. If you do the work and find what really motivates you, then you are ultimately more likely to keep returning to the activity.

The actionable item I would like you to take from this is to sit down this week and try to identify one to two things that motivate you in your fitness life and then take it one step further and find one action step to take with that motivation. Let me know what you find!

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