I have been pretty vocal about needing a goal in order to keep me motivated. Working out JUST for the sake of fitting into my jeans, seeing a certain number on the scale or the very important but broad idea of "being healthy" gets me to hit the gym, but I lack the passion, determination, excitement and frankly, the commitment that I have when I am training for a specific race.
Training and racing gives me a sense of accomplishment and purpose that I just don't get while "working out" and it gives me extra motivation to log the miles. Heck even with this motivation, sometimes, it takes every ounce of willpower that I have to get out of bed to go for a long run before work. I just LOVE to sleep!
So, this is where I have learned that having what I will call "Layers of Motivation" help. For example, here are my current "Layers" ... with the one on the bottom carrying the most weight, or put another way, it is getting me out of bed in the mornings!
Layers of Motivation
1. Be Healthy for myself
2. Be Healthy for my family - set a good example for my children
3. Me time - decompress, try not to think of the many things on my "to do" list
4. Ensure I continue to fit into my favorite David Khan jeans
5. Stay within my "happy range" on the scale
6. Have the fitness and endurance to finish the race
7. Have the fitness and endurance to RACE the race and hit my goals
8. Find out what happens next in my audio book!
Ok, I am sure there are other layers I am missing, but as you can see, #8 is tangible, which is so helpful when you are having a tired and not motivated kind of day.
On a day when all of the bigger goals in my layer of motivation can wait, I go for my run because I want to see what is going to happen next to the characters in my audio book! I ONLY listen to my audio book while I run (or when tri training, cycle) and when the workout stops, the book stops. So, essentially there is a mini-cliff hanger encouraging me to get back into my running shoes every morning. I am actually headed out shortly for a lunch run and I can't wait to find out what happens to Katniss and Peeta in the Hunger Games (no spoilers, please)!
So, what are your layers of motivation? Any book recommendations?
... and seriously, if you have never tried running with an audio book or podcast, try it! And no, I am not sponsored by Audible! :)