Motivation and Passion

When you catch a glimpse of your potential, that’s when passion is born. – Zig Ziglar

So you’ve made the decision to sacrifice a few hours of your life each week at the altar of Gym.

The sacrifice pleases Gym greatly.

…but does it please you?


It’s easy to look down at your gut and say to yourself, “Gosh, I need to do something about that.” It’s easy until you look down one day and you don’t say it anymore. It’s easy, that’s is, until your doctor starts saying it.

Now comes the great psychological dilemma: Do I do what I know I need to do or do I do what I’ve always done?

I know a guy who, at his heaviest, weighed nearly 400 lbs. They called him, “Big Daddy.”

Big Daddy was a protector of all his friends…a true gentle giant. His weight and the strength that comes with weight, gave him a sense of place and an identity that he used to navigate the world.

It’s not an uncommon thing. You can find a “Big Jim” or “Big John” in just about every community from St. Louis to the Florida Keys. And I know obesity isn’t just a “southern” thing but we sure seem to validate it down here more (if only amongst men.) Women aren’t afforded the same luxury.

At any rate, Big Daddy was set on being “Big Daddy” until his doctor told him that being “Big Daddy” was killing him. …if he didn’t loose weight, he’d be dead within 5 years.

So, Big Daddy decided to have bariatric surgery because Big Daddy had found his motivation – to live.

…and for his health needs, bariatric surgery was probably the best option… as it may be for some of you.

However, bariatric surgery isn’t ever a “good” option. Especially when there are tried and true methods for healthy weight loss out there waiting on you to want them.

I know people who have intentionally gained weight to qualify for the surgery because they didn’t want to put in the work to loose it… as if being cut open from stem to stern is “the easy way,” but I guess some figure it’d be easier than sweating for an hour or two a couple days a week…

TBH: I, myself, even considered having the gastric sleeve done but my vanity far outweighed my motivation for health. LoL that’s probably the only decision I’ve ever made where my vanity helped me out. (Aprons of skin are not the look for me.) And hey! It’s what got me into the gym (for the most part, anyway.)

But regardless of our motivations: health, vanity, whatever…motivations are WHY we do what we do. WHY we make the choices we make. Our motivations are the reasons behind our behaviors… until our choices become habitual and at that point we’re just doing what we do because it’s what we’ve done regardless of need or desire.

And motivation can take us all kinds of places: to work, to school, to the gym…

But motivation won’t keep us there. Staying there takes passion. And passion is what turns work into a career, school into an education and the gym into a lifestyle.

Passion is the joy of our WHY.

Our goals are like a vehicle – our motivation is the ignition and the gas is our passion. We can try to start a car all day long but if there isn’t any gas in the tank, we ain’t getting very far.

Said another way: our motivation is like a book of matches and our passion is the wood we need to build a fire. How big of a fire depends entirely on the amount of fuel we have…if you need a bonfire, you’ve got to have a lot to burn.

A dear friend told me she can always tell who’s gonna stick it out in the gym and who won’t just based on how they behave in the gym. Passion shows itself because it’s proud and it works hard. If they put in the work she knows they’ll do well. If they treat it more as a social hour…well, it’s easier to socialize elsewhere than over the grunts and bangs and clangs of the gym.

Now, I’m not saying you can’t visit with your friends in there. You HAVE to if only to have someone to complain with after your fourth set of weighted kettle bell squats or walking lunges cuz OMG! UGH! But there’s a time for talkin’ and a time for workin’.

So if your motivation is to loose the weight, that’s the best place to start but you have to feed that motivation with passion: Passion for a new life, a new way of being, a sexy new body…a sexy new mindset.

And if you’re not excited about what your body can become get out of your own way and start looking at those fitness magazines because you can look like that… to some degree or another – depending on the amount of work you put in.

You can start a business with motivation but you can’t build it without passion.

Our results are directly proportional to our passion and motivation.

This is true whether it be in the gym or at the office or with any of our other goals but if there is one area of our lives in which our passion should be the loudest and proudest it should be our health, right?

After all, without our health, we really have nothing at all.

Unfortunately, in our instant gratification, Cheeto and Twinkie world, our health often takes the backseat to our family’s needs, our friends, and our own addictions and before too long we’re at the dr’s office being told if we don’t change our ways we’ll die. Martyr for what, really?

Hopefully, you don’t need that Sword of Damocles hanging over your head but it’s a great way to figure out exactly what your passionate about.

I get it. Bad habits are hard to break…especially if you’re an emotional eater like me. Comfort foods are so damn comforting. But it only takes two weeks to build a good habit. And your health is an awesome habit to build!

And remember this:

You worst day in the gym is better than your best week on the couch!

Trust me on that.


Bottom line:

I’m neither a trainer nor a psychologist but I like to pretend I’m both and I know as well as anyone that if you don’t know why you’re doing something you’re not likely to keep doing it…even if it’s good for you.

So I encourage you to sit down and think about your WHY and once you’ve got it firmly in your mind, allow yourself to get excited about it – like really really excited about it.

Your passion will carry you past your nerves and intimidation. It’ll carry you past the self confidence issues that you (and every last one of us) have. It’ll carry you right into a new way of being.

You have to be passionate about your goals but before you can do that, you have to realize that YOU ARE DEEPLY, INHERENTLY, WONDROUSLY, BEAUTIFULLY WORTHY OF THEM!

Go get sweaty. You’re worth it.


Joshua T.