A couple of days ago I was catching up with one of my many cousins and the conversation turned to being healthy, eating right, working out, etc. She is like me - determined - all you need to do is doubt our ability to do something we'll kill ourselves trying to prove you wrong. I've been trying to get her back into running and she told me that another relative asked her why I run and workout a lot. I was surprised because no one had ever asked me that before. So I started thinking, "Why do I love to run and workout?" What motivates me? Well this photograph of Muhammad Ali vs Sonny Liston is pretty much motivation enough. I even have this as the desktop image on my laptop.
But it did get me thinking about this and I made a list of the top things that get me going (because I make lists for everything):
Family History: Well for starters, if you open the dictionary and look up "high blood pressure" and "diabetes", you'll find pictures of my family. Yep, in our fam, once you hit a certain age its almost inevitable you'll be diagnosed with both. I'm hoping to break the trend.
Competition: I'm a competitive person. I like to win (especially at poker and Trivial Pursuit, neither of which I'm very good at). But mostly, I like to beat myself. At every race I try to beat my last time. With every Body Pump class I try to up the weight, with every yoga class I try to hold the poses longer, with every swim I try to increase the amount of laps in between breaks. I like to set goals and test myself to see if I can do better than the last time. I mean if you don't try to get better, then what's the point, right?
Goals: Speaking of goals, I get really inspired by reading other peoples' blogs. I have a decent amount of blogs added to my Google Reader and I get so excited when there's new posts. One of my favorite blog to read is Lululemon's. Lululemon is big on setting goals. In fact, they have a whole section of their Web site devoted to it. A recent blog post talked about setting goals. I always made mental notes to myself about my goals, but this particular post motivated me write them down. So I went in search for the perfect journal to record my goals in. Not an easy feat; I was very specific in what I was looking for. I went to dozens of stores looking for the right one, then had to find the right kind of pens (Sharpie ballpoint pens) to use with it (I have a weird obsession with school supplies). After a long search, I finally found the perfect one.
I get ideas at the most random of places so I carry it with me everywhere I go.
Quotes: To go along with my goal journal, I'm also big on quotes. I find them in magazines, billboards, tv shows, books, Web sites - everywhere. I used to write them down in a "Quote Journal", but when I bought my new goals journal I saw this pretty box and I got the idea to make a "Quote Box." So now I write quotes down on an index card and file them in my "Quote Box." Every day I pull one out and make that my thought for the day.
Tunes: Of course music is probably my biggest source of motivation. I often browse iTunes in search of new music to run to. Currently I have 130 songs and 8.7 hours of tunes on my Burn playlist. My current top favs are:
- I Gotta Feeling, Black-Eyed Peas. I mean is there a better song "Getting Ready to Go Out" song or what? - Wall-to-Wall, Chris Brown. I looooooove starting a run out to this song - Keeps Getting Better, Fighter and Dirrty, Christina. When I'm starting to drag I flip on one of these tunes to get my energy back. - Good Girls Go Bad, Cobra Starship. Features Queen B, good enough for me. - Young forever, Jay-Z. My newest fav. - My Life Would Suck Without You, Kelly Clarkson. Ever since Jozi played this in a Spin class, I've been hooked. - Everyththing by Pink - Anything by Britney - Lose Yourself, Eminem. In my opinion, the best running song ever. - Till I Collapse, Eminem. Read the opening lyrics. How does this not motivate you?
'Cause sometimes you feel tired, feel weak, and when you feel weak, you feel like you wanna just give up. But you gotta search within you, you gotta find that inner strength and just pull that shit out of you and get that motivation to not give up and not be a quitter, no matter how bad you wanna just fall flat on your face and collapse.
And my latest guilty pleasure is that Taylor Swift song. I can't help it, its catchy...and hey, at least its not Miley Cyrus.