The Motivation Struggle
I woke up mad at the world. I was overtired, overworked, and hadn’t slept well due to my dog having a thunderstorm panic attack from approximately 2am-5am. It’s hard to get any sleep when your 12 pound Cairn Terrier is sitting on your head practically clawing away at your brain, while hyperventilating, and drooling on your face. When I finally felt like I could get out of bed without unnecessarily snapping at someone, I decided that coffee was my only hope to survive the day. I went to my nearest Starbucks. When it was my time to order my drink, the barista asked if I had the day off. I replied “Yes thank god.” I needed a day off badly. We joked back and forth about it being a full moon, and as she handed me my drink I said, “Well, thank god it’s Friday! Have a good weekend!” The barista did not respond and almost had a blank expression on her face. Awkward. Did I say something wrong?
When I got back to my car, it hit me. No wonder she did not respond……it’s not Friday, it’s WEDNESDAY! I almost felt compelled to go back in and explain that I am a flight attendant, and I don’t know what timezone it is, let alone what day it is, and my dog may have clawed out part of my brain last night during the storm. I also laughed pretty hard. I laughed so hard that I actually felt “less mad” at the world. When I got home, my happy bubble was popped with bad news, and I fell back into that yuck-slump. I decided I had to be pro-active. I gave myself a 10 minute timer to “be allowed to be mad.” When that timer was up, I hopped straight into my car and headed to my boxing gym. I listened to “mad” music the whole way there. When the class started, I was fired up and my adrenaline was on high. I ran the hardest I had ever run. I did squats, and push-ups with purpose, and hit that heavy bag with everything I had. Less than 15 minutes into class I was breathing heavy, and sweat was shooting off my body with every hook, jab, and uppercut. I let it all out. I wanted to cry. I wanted to scream. I pulled every ounce of frustration inside from the prior week and used it as fuel.
Halfway through class, I got a quick glimpse of a girl in the mirror. She had killer triceps, and badass form with her hooks. I tend to find fitness peers quite motivational, and took another peek. It hit me that the girl in the mirror was me. I paused for a second. Where did that definition come from? When did I become better at boxing? Am I sure that was ME that I saw?
Motivation is a ‘catch-22’. It’s hard to be motivated when you feel like you will never get there, but the second you start seeing results, you are un-stoppable. I have never been, and never will be a catalogue fitness model, or win a race. I am not fast, and I have flaws. All that matters to me is to challenge myself physically, and improve myself. Somehow along the way, my body decided that it had no choice but to follow suit. Slowly, but steadily. I have gotten stronger. I may not be the strongest I can be, but I am improving every day, and for that I am proud. THAT is my motivation.
To the new girl in class who left early– That was me at one time. Don’t let your pride get in the way. Come back and try again. It will become easier.
To the guy who is afraid others will laugh at him at the gym– Anyone who is focused more on you and your flaws than their own workout shouldn’t be at the gym anyway.
To the woman who wants it, but isn’t seeing results– Others will notice changes before you do. Don’t quit.
To the man who doesn’t have a support system– You should be so proud of your goals, even if they are only on paper as of now. We all have to start somewhere.
You are stronger than you think you are. Keep up the great work