By: Jamie McIntyre, BS Exercise Science, ACE-CPT
As I stood there hunched over with my hands on my knees after another grueling 5-mile run I thought to myself why I am doing this? Now, I am a competitive person by nature so I understand why I push myself harder every workout, because I always want to be better than the last time. What I hadn’t put much thought into was why I worked out like I do in the first place. Yes I am a personal trainer and yes it is part of my job but I could probably get away with fewer and shorter workouts and still be a good role model for my clients. So, the question remained why do I continue to push myself and why is it so important for me to know and understand that why?
Working out is hard. There is nothing easy about weight loss/muscle gain/toning. It takes a lot of discipline and hard work to reach our goals. Knowing and understanding your why is the key to success. Your why is not “because I want to lose 10 pounds,” it goes deeper than that. Your why goes into why you want to lose 10 pounds at all. What is truly motivating you to reach your goals? You must know the answer to this question in order to achieve success because if you don’t then chances are you will not have the drive and determination it takes to get to where you want to be. Here are a three questions you should ask yourself to determine your why:
- Why do you want (insert goal here)? – Like I said before you need to go into why you want to achieve that goal. For example, if your goal is to lose 10 pounds your reason for that may be because when you were at your goal weight you had never felt better about yourself. You were more confident, more outgoing, and more comfortable in your own body. Our feelings motivate us and knowing the feelings involved with achieving your goal is crucial to your success. So, dive deep and find out why you want to reach your goals and identify the feelings involved.
- What in your life is going to change if you achieve that goal? – Now I want you to dig a little deeper and think about how your life will be different once you achieve your goals. Will you be more confident? Get off medication? Be able to play with your kids more? Having a clear picture of how your life will change is another way to motivate yourself to reach your goals.
- Are you doing it for yourself or for someone else? – This question is important. You need to know if you are being motivated by yourself or by someone else. If you are doing it for someone else, is it what’s best for you? Because if it isn’t something that you want or that you believe you will benefit from chances are you are not going to achieve your goals. You must be able to say that you are pushing yourself towards your goal because it is important for you.
So, dig deep and use these questions to find your why. I promise you that if you can find it and have a clear picture of why you want what you want then nothing can stand in your way.
As for me, I workout and eat healthy for my future self because I know that the harder I work now and the more disciplined I am now, the easier it will be when I’m older. I have learned a lot from my clients and one thing that I am continually told is how much harder it is to achieve your goals when you are older. I believe them, even though I am still young, I know that my body is not the same as it was when I was 20. The great thing about my why is that I will always be working for my future self. My why is never going to change, other factors may come into it but I will always be working for my future self.
Jamie McIntyre, B.S. Exercise Science, ACE-CPT
Jamie McIntyre is the Marketing Coordinator and a personal trainer at Ascension Fitness. She came from San Diego, California where she recently completed a Master’s degree in Business Administration at San Diego State University. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Exercise Science from Dickinson State University. Jamie received a softball scholarship to play at Dickinson State University. During her time at Dickinson State she completed an internship as a student athletic trainer which led to her passion of fitness. Jamie loves training, softball, ringette, and watching movies.