I don’t know about you, but I, as someone who’s tried numerous group trainings at lots of places and with lots of coaches, have always been curious how coaches (the good ones!) manage to arrive to their sessions happy and motivated.

What’s their secret? Where do they acquire the never-ending inspiration that drives them not only to join many sessions but to conduct them? This requires extraordinary willpower after all. They need to motivate others and constantly show example to those wishing to exercise. Between you and me we can admit that we’ve all missed training sessions out of sheer laziness :) I sure have! But coaches cannot afford that, it’s their job, and hopefully their vocation, which implies the conundrum of the source of motivation. Written by Ildikó Szántó.

So what is motivation?

Motivation encompasses all internal factors that compels us to act or behave in a certain way. It manifests differently in every individual, of course. In my experience, the most common reason for doing sports is to improve our appearance, then to restore and maintain health. But it can also be the completion of a race, stress reduction, self-improvement, or simply the love of physical exercise.

„Motivation is the reason for people’s actions, willingness and goals. Motivation is derived from the word motive in the English language which is defined as a need that requires satisfaction. These needs could also be wants or desires that are acquired through influence of culture, society, lifestyle, etc. or generally innate.”

How’s it with me?

The love of sports is what drives me the most. I can tell you that it wasn’t me who chose sports, it was sports that chose me. I’d started it and never wanted to stop ever since. This is only true, however, for the sports I feel comfortable with, like fitness, dance, aerobics, gymnastics, group fitness sessions (body shaping, circuit training, spartan cross, boxing, anything). This is why it’s important for everyone to find a suitable form of training, in this case I think there is no need for any motivation other than the pleasure we get from doing what we do.

Earlier I did spartan cross training, which was terribly hard. The coaches and the others were astonished to see me smile – am I not “dying right now”? Of course I was, but I like what we’re doing, I like the music, I like the group, I like the mood, the coaches are paying attention to us (and motivating us in their own way), the group is working together, the training is exhausting, what else is there to wish for?

Source: flickr.com

Is motivation my life or is my life motivation?

I’m in the fortunate position that exercise is my vocation. Seldom is the case when I don’t want to start a session because of anything. This can only be due to other private reasons. But even then I know that if I go and see my guests who came to me to move and recharge, my mood gets better at once. As soon as the music starts I get even more energized, and during training my soul gets rid of all the stress and I go home feeling good.

This is not specific to my job: going to others’ training sessions also made me feel good whether or not I was in a good mood. I always knew it would have a positive effect on me in the end, so it was worth setting off.

You can’t just find motivation anywhere

Unfortunately, the situation is different when I have to do sports I don’t like. In such cases my motivation is dominated by external factors like toning, keeping fit, or knowing that I’ll feel better after the training because I exercised. For example, running feels very difficult to me and I don’t like it. But there was a period when that was my only option. I admit, sometimes I got weak and I skipped it. Or I stopped prematurely. Of course it’s all in your head but it takes great willpower. Unfortunately, from the very beginning I’m thinking about when it will be over, how bored I am, I can’t breath, my side hurts etc.

Source: flickr.com

This is not the right attitude. If you do something, do it with full force. The situation is the same with workout in the gym – unfortunately it bores me. Except when someone tells me what to do and I don’t need to control myself. Sometimes, when my only option was gym workout, I skipped it, too. At times like this it’s good to have someone who encourages us. But in fact we must be strong ourselves and come up with a list of arguments for what we’re doing. Therefore, in my opinion, we should look for a training method which fits our personality, which we can enjoy for the sake of moving and which we don’t experience as a burden. I’m sure there is a suitable one for everyone!

Exceptions are everywhere

There may be factors that make regular sports difficult, of course, such as exhausting physical work, children, illness, learning, or financial problems, but most of these can be overcome. Maybe not on a daily basis, but 2 or 3 hours every week should be manageable.

Not all sports have financial implications. You don’t even necessarily need to leave home, you can find countless online videos that can help, but it’s worth keeping an eye out if they’re professional.

In case of acute illnesses it’s best to rest, but these shouldn’t hamper us for long. For chronic problems it’s advisable to consult a professional so as not to cause more trouble, but there’s always a solution.

So, integrating exercise into our lifestyle is mostly up to our will. Even doing a sport without enjoyment ha a number of positive effects, but rather only physical ones. As much as we can, we should try choosing a sport that we love or one we could love, as it contributes to our physical, mental and spiritual well-being.

Original article here.

Source of data in speech bubbles: here.

Source of featured image: flickr. com

Translation by Ádám Hittaller

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