Talking to someone, basic interactions and how they describe themselves can really tell you a lot about who they are, their goals and motivations both good and bad. People will often describe their visit to the gym as they’re going to workout, do cardio or lift weights. The popular thing now days seems to be splitting your body into days, “leg day, chest and back day, arms and shoulder day” and the such. In my experience having such a perspective is easy to consider your “workout” as a chore, another errand or something that sounds absolutely tedious and boring. The program is essentially a to do list and a tour of the machines at the gym. Not only is this lame and boring but it also makes it easier to pass it off to the side and skip when something more interesting comes along. If your “workout” isn’t important to you, then what’s the point?
So why do I “train” as opposed to “work out”? When I am training for something, I am working toward my goal, pushing my limits and challenging myself to be stronger both physically and mentally. Training gives me focus and direction on what is important to me. I am more motivated to make it to the gym, get on the bike run in the rain or get in the pool on a cold day. Even on the days when everybody else stays in, I still get myself up and out the door because unlike those who are “working out” I am still in training and no matter the conditions, every day is a new opportunity to be better stronger and closer than I was yesterday.
Training not only gives you more focus and direction in your fitness but also more substance, people who “train” tend to have more substantial goals. Fitness isn’t and shouldn’t be about losing weight, looking good, being skinny or any of those aesthetic goals. Fitness is about being able to do more, growing and working toward the things you’ve always wanted to accomplish., being better able to perform in your own individual strengths. Most importantly it’s for you, not anybody else. If I tell someone they will climb a mountain, they will look at me and laugh. That person will fail at fitness, the mountain is irrelevant however their quickness to immediately reject such a challenge that is above them, they will never realize that they can, in fact climb that mountain. (For the record I have already climbed 12 14ers in 3 years). In addition when interacting with people, “I worked out ” or “I went to the gym” sounds boring and uninteresting, it’s a bit difficult to expand a conversation off that. It shows that you don’t seem to place much value on the experience, something you’ll quickly forget about. If you aren’t doing something worth talking about, what’s the point?
I always talk about my adventures in exercise and training, to some extent even includes bragging but to me it’s important, it’s an aspect of my life I choose to share and hope to inspire people with. The hours I spend training, whether it’s 1 hour or 4 hours each contribute to helping me succeed in my goals and give me a reason to get up and go every day. It makes me happy and excited, it’s what gives me purpose and most importantly it’s what I love. I am not trying to prove anything to anybody, sure I share the experiences but if someone chooses not to listen, it does not affect me in any way, the only people who do listen are the ones who truly care and want to see me succeed. Many of the people in life are starting to discover this themselves, they might not train at the same level as me but what they’re doing is important to them, they are challenging themselves and getting excited over the prospect of accomplishing their goals. Ranging from finishing a 10k to competing at the Gay Games, being able to compete as a body builder to training for the AIDS Lifecycle, even just being able to continue to function and live independently as you age. I am always inspired to see people undertake such a profound and exciting step forward on their journey. All of a sudden when you see progress, it gives you a new sense of motivation and realize you truly can do more, as you inch closer to your goals and gain a whole new perspective on the world around you. Whatever your goals are they need to be personal for you.
You can truly accomplish anything but you will not succeed until you truly believe in yourself.