Don’t be fooled.

These motivational memes have been flooding Facebook and Pinterest lately…pictures of glistening bodies in skimpy clothing with some kind of pop art background and a slash of text reading something surely meant to be inspirational…a personal mantra to chant when the workout seems particularly daunting or difficult. I’m not sure where they started. Perhaps the genesis was the Nike ads…My Butt is Big, etc. Whatever the origin, they’re everywhere.
I don’t know how I feel about them. Visually, they’re interesting. And inspirational. Who doesn’t like looking at a gleaming, fit, strong body? Emotionally, they can evoke something in the reader…something that stimulates him or her to get up and go…

But I feel like they’re deceptive.

They show an uberhot model throwing some cheesy ‘keep going/attaboy’ line out…but the fact is a) most of the images aren’t of the real person either and b) there’s a lot more to this than any one little motivational line can express.   If you need a motivational poster and some daily kudos to keep going, I’ve got news for you…

There will be days you don’t want to. Days when the wake-up is too early or the heat is too oppressive or the workout on the board looks too hard. You’re going to want to quit. You’re going to have days you hate every gritty, dirty, hard, grimy, sweaty  second of it.

I’m not going to blow smoke up your ass. There are things you’re going to excel at, and there are things at which you will suck so hard you’re going to want to throw it down and never ever do it again. There are movements that feel unnatural (until you do it correctly) and there are weights you’ve never considered. Your hands are going to get calloused. Your knees will be bruised. Your shoulders and back will hurt.

On the day you don’t want to run, 2 miles will show up on the board. Burpees happen regularly. No one loves a heavy thruster. Trying to jerk for the first time makes you look like a drunk monkey trying to nail a football blindfolded. Unless you’re one of the lucky few who figures it out naturally…then you’ll be envied and glared at so hard by your fellows in the class you’ll feel like you did something wrong.

But none of that matters. Because once you know…you KNOW…what the feeling is like to do something you’ve never done…you’re going to want it. Through the exhaustion, heat, cold, tears, sweat, and confusion, you are going to WANT it with everything you know…everything in you.  The real motivation is going to come from your sense of accomplishment when you have your A-HA! moment.

 

Look at those posters, and recognize them for what they are. They’re marketing, plain and simple. If they speak to you, that’s great…but don’t let them fool you. This can suck, and suck hard, unless you have more to drive you than some fancy photoshop work.

 

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