Everybody works hard when they feel like it, but only the best do it when they don’t feel like it.
I have been following this mantra for a while now. I’ve hurt myself in a bunch of little ways: my foot had plantar facitist, I slightly ripped my hamstring, and a bad pair of shoes gave me blisters on my heels. Despite those injuries, I have found a way around them by walking or riding the exercise bike.
In fact, I just looked at my log and I haven’t missed a day exercising for five weeks. Some days I had to take it easy and just walk, but I didn’t just abandon my workouts. I modified them to accommodate my problems.
If I can do this, then you can as well. If you’re tempted to skip your workout, remember me, limping along with a torn hamstring. The best workout even when they don’t want to.
Nothing in this world is handed to you. You have to go out and get it! Nobody said it would be easy, but hard work ALWAYS pays off.
It is SO true!
There is only one, small, problem…
There have been times when I thought I was working hard or I had been told I was working hard (I’m looking at you, heart rate monitor charts), and I really wasn’t. After long bouts of laziness, just moving at all can feel like hard work.
If you think you are working hard and aren’t seeing results, then you need to kick it up a notch. Either you aren’t working hard enough in the gym (or out on the road) or you aren’t working hard enough in the kitchen. REALLY look at your habits and find the places where you can improve.
Don’t fool yourself (like I did) into thinking that you are working hard. If you don’t see results, then you have to try harder. It’s as simple as that.
When I think of all the ways I’ve failed and then complained about how my body is shaped because of that failure, I need to hang my head in shame. From now on, every time I feel like complaining about clothing that doesn’t fit or how I look, I am going to add a small workout to my day. It will be the thing I do instead of complaining because I want to be a success, not a failure.
The other day, I printed up all the little motivational posters that I have found all over the web and put them on a foam board. I then put it up on the wall right in front of the treadmill, so when I’m running, I can read them.
Here’s a picture of it. Click it to see full-size:
It really helps me when I’m doing intervals and running. Sometimes that short run seems like an eternity, but being able to look up at that poster and be told to keep going, not to quit, and to shoot for the stars really helps me get through it. Sometimes I just let my eyes wander over the pictures, sometimes I read the words over and over in my head and other times I systematically read EVERY word to myself to keep from obsessing on the time and my legs.
I’m considering making a slideshow of these same images on my phone so if I’m exercising at the gym instead of at home, I can refer to my phone and let it feed me inspiration at ten second intervals.
What do you do to keep inspired and running? I would love some ideas because sometimes it’s hard to get through my short running intervals.
I’ve been wearing this turtle necklace lately to remind me that “Slow and Steady Wins The Race.” The more I think about the fable of The Tortoise and the Hare, however, the more I think that everyone got the moral of the story wrong.
If you are unfamiliar with the fable of The Tortoise and the Hare, here is a brilliant Disney version of it:
Slow and steady wins the race only if the fast people dink around, get cocky and lose sight of their goals. What REALLY won that race is humility and determination. When the hare saw that he had a good lead at the first, he took a NAP! The tortoise was able to pass him. DON’T SLACK OFF!
Later, when the hare saw that he was so far ahead of the tortoise, he started playing to the audience of adorable bunny girls. So the tortoise caught up to him. BE HUMBLE.
Near the end, the tortoise is so close to the finish line and the hare is still goofing off. I love this image of him working his hardest to win the race. WORK YOUR BUTT OFF!
Finally, at the end of the race, the tortoise wins because he’s willing to stretch himself almost out of his shell. STICK YOUR NECK OUT!
Wearing my little turtle necklace reminds me of all these things and every time I’m tempted to skip a workout, I think about that turtle sneaking by while the hare took a nap. Every time I get a little too excited about losing a pound or two, I remember that tortoise plodding along while the hare flirted with the girl bunnies. Every time I think about taking it easy on my exercise, I think of that turtle busting his tiny tail to finish that race. There is so much more to that story than “slow and steady wins the race,” and I try to remember it all:
You don’t need jewelry to remind yourself of your goals, but you do need SOMETHING. Whether it’s a picture, a mantra or mannerism, you need to have something to remind yourself of all the things you want to be.