On the fence about beginning your endurance sport journey? Are you a veteran runner or cyclist and need a reminder about WHY you do this day in and day out. Read on for my top 8 reasons that get me up and on the road/treadmill/lane.
1. Be a role model: despite what NBA Hall of Famer Charles Barkley said in that famous Nike ad in the '90's (anybody remember that??), we are role models. Our next generation will do what they see, not what they're told...so do it! You may be unaware, but others see what you do, and there's a good chance that they're inspired in some way.
2. Feel good: not just physically, but mentally, emotionally, body-image-wise. It helps EVERYTHING! You'd be hard-pressed to meet somebody who wants to be overweight, unhealthy and lethargic. Yet by becoming active we can help or reverse those things in our lives that we want to change.
3. Get healthy: it amazes me how people are willing to spend thousands of dollars for the quick "magic pill" (ie drinking gallons of a special tea to boost metabolism & burn calories), when all it really takes is to get moving. There's a reason the diet industry is a multi-billion dollar business, but we wouldn't feel the need to rely on it if we were simply more active.
4. Social groups: no, not the ones we meet & talk to online. I mean real, living, breathing, in-the-flesh individuals who share your same desire to find the best rendition of themselves, partly through endurance sport.
5. Unleash your inner child: let's face it, we all know parents who want to live vicariously through their children and their dreams. But aren't we all still kids...albeit a little older? We need to have dreams of our own and pursue them.
6. Invest in yourselves: this isn't mean to be selfish...but ask yourself: am I worth the investment? Your answer had better be a resounding YES!! Create an exciting future for yourself, don't sit back & wonder what could've been.
7. Reduce stress: we seem to live in a world where we're constantly under pressure, and our only response is to keep going in circles until we spectacularly crash. I don't think it's coincidence that as we become less active as a society we are seeing a lot more burnout, or people turn to other forms of stress relief (many which are not good for us!!).
8. Success in sport leads to success in life: one thing with competing in individual sport is that YOU get to decide if you're successful or not. And it will take hard work. And more often than not the people who are willing to work hard, be patient with progress, show resilience in times of trouble, ask for help when needed, and learn from their failures - rather than quit because of them - are the same people who will apply these principles to other aspects of their lives.
There are a multitude of other reasons why we may choose to do the sport(s) we do, but you should sit down & write out the reasons why you want to pursue this lifestyle... I'm sure you won't regret it!!