Do you know the difference between training and exercise? Here it is, in its simplest terms:
Athletes train. The average person (this is most of us) exercises.
Training is the conscious act of working through a pre-developed workout program with an end goal of achieving something. For example, an athlete could be training for a marathon, a new weightlifting meet, or even a CrossFit competition.
Exercising, on the other hand, is the basic act of getting active. In most cases, the goal here is to lose weight or build minimal muscles. However, the key downside – and the difference from an athlete’s workout – is that there is no concrete plan put in place.
This leads us to the most important aspect of what motivates an athlete – the process.
We get so caught up in the idea that motivation should be based on always striving for the end goal. To a certain extent, having this idea in mind will help you to better see the outcome as a euphoric experience, but athletes have a different psychology.
An athlete understands that every workout that leads up to their event – whatever it may be – is crucially important. By that measure, an athlete is motivated by their own actions each and every day.
Yes, many athletes will tell you that they strive to accomplish a particular task, that they have role models and people they look up to, but when it comes to motivation – athletes are very different than most of us.
The most important part that separates an athlete’s motivation from most of us is that they have a deep ability to exercise through the grind.
The grind is a term used to describe the daily workings of an athlete’s training program, especially as it leads up to a competition.
Athletes have the most unique ability to almost love the grind. They thrive in settings where they are put to the test, where the pain is the only option, and where recovery is essential.
Athletes have a unique psychology about the grind.
Most people will believe that they can look to the end goal as a source of motivation. Some people might even start using another person as an external motivation.
It really does not matter which you want to choose – none of them will be more effective than altering your psychology to match that of an elite athlete and their love for the grind.
Loving the grind and being motivated by your daily work takes time and requires conscious effort.
As an individual, you can start by developing a clear plan for your goals and how you can achieve them. Once you have successfully constructed a plan, you can begin the real training and develop your own love of the grind.
Join the ranks of athletes in their love for the grind. Make the most of every struggle and learn to thrive in situations where you are pushed past your comfort zone.
Like an athlete, you can learn to enjoy the grind. Let your daily actions be your motivation to keep going, day in and day out.
When you can do this, you too will enjoy success!