Arik McGathey

3 Steps To Fitness: Motivation

Arik McGathey

There was a time when competing was THE most important thing to me. One of the few times in my life that I remember totally losing it was in an orthopedic surgeon’s office when he told me I had to miss the soccer season because I had to have surgery on my finger (which I had cut the end off of). I cried. I pounded on the table. My mom was there. I'm pretty sure she thought I was going to hit the doctor. Sports were emotional, personal. They defined me. 

Not anymore. Now I can play and compete and have fun. Who knew! That doesn’t mean I don’t want to win and it doesn’t mean I hold back at all. I have no problem knocking someone to the ground with a good should to shoulder tackle in coed indoor soccer. All it means is that I have a different attitude toward my training and competing. I have a new motivation.

    Your motivation, your “why,” is crucial to your success in developing your fitness. Eating healthy is a cruel and unusual punishment if you don’t want to do it, OR it’s an exciting learning experience that moves you closer to your goals. All your good intentions to wake up and workout will be dashed by the snooze button if you aren’t motivated by something more than “I want to work out because . . . health?”

    You need to peel back some layers, but there is a “why” in there somewhere. The best way to find it is to keep asking “why?” Why do you want to workout? I want to get stronger. Why do you want to get stronger? So I feel BA. Why do you want to feel BA? The kids who picked on me in grade school always seemed BA. Now we’re getting somewhere.

    This can be a tough thing to do by yourself. Having someone help you find your motivation is probably a good idea. This is where a quality coach comes in. A coach should help you assess where you are, where you’re going, AND WHY. Any coach knows that without a deep motivation, like caring for your kids/grandkids or changing the cycle of obesity in your family, you will never stick to the plan.

    Along with your “why” you need a support structure. Recruit your friends and family and coworkers. Tell them your goals and why you want to achieve them. Ask them to help keep you on track. No one wants to help? Join the Beards, Barbells, and Bibles Facebook group. We will support your goals and hold you accountable.

    Back in the day, the thrill of competition and the allure of victory were enough to drive us to train hard and pursue excellence. When those fleeting prizes faded, a gap was left. I felt it and I know you have to. You want to train, but you don’t have anything to train for. Today that ends. Start asking yourself why. Why should you eat better? Why do you want to start training? Dig through the layers. Find that “why” that reignites the competitor inside of you.

If you know it’s there, but need help fanning the flames email me at I want to help get you back into fighting form. And be sure to join the Beards, Barbells, and Bibles FB group to surround yourself with a team of guys ready to achieve goals and help you reach yours.