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How I Stay Motivated


It’s a question we’ve all been asked or even asked ourselves.

We’ve all figured out our own ways and tricks to get into “workout mode” when we don’t feel like it, whether it is seeing if a gym buddy is going, listening to your gym playlist or, god forbid, looking up a Buzzfeed article, the “Top 28 ways to stay motivated”.

For Me, It’s All or Nothing

For me, the answer is relatively simple, albeit surprising… I don’t believe in motivation. I have an all or nothing type personality when I train I find it really easy to eat healthily and to keep the cravings at bay but when I eat badly it’s 10 times harder to force myself to train. They go hand in hand with me and it’s that momentum that keeps me focused more so than motivated.

Have a Goal to Work Towards

I always like to be aimed at something, getting ready for Tough Mudder or the Crossfit 2018 open. Even the smaller goals throughout the year like being able to complete a muscle-up or hold a handstand. These are the things I think about when I’m convincing myself to lace up my running shoes or pack my gym gear.

So why don’t I believe in motivation?

Motivation is fleeting and unreliable. It shows up whenever it wants and can disappear just as easily. You don’t have to work for it, strive for it or earn it. It’s too easy to use no motivation as an excuse. A million things have been achieved by people while they were motivated but it’s the thousands of things accomplished by people when they had nothing to pull from but willpower and grit that really make the difference.

It’s the days where everything hurts, you’re tired and stiff, it’s probably raining and work has you in a bad mood but you decide to put in the work anyway. These are the days where discipline will carry you far further than motivation. Discipline is cultivated over time and may require saying yes to a few extra reps and no to a few extra bites but once you have it, your mind will be as tough as your body.

So don’t question how you can stay motivated and start asking yourself how far can you go without it!?

My name is Ross. Full-time personal trainer for 12 years and part-time adult when I have to be. Tough Mudder ambassador and CrossFit athlete in training. I signed up for my first OCR event in 2016 through the gym where I work and since then they have become a huge part of my everyday routine. I regularly work with groups and help them prepare for OCR events like Tough Mudder. To get in contact or keep up with my callisthenics, CrossFit and Tough Mudder based training, follow me on Instagram, @ross.mortimer


  1. Brilliant article. I completely agree – I go through spells of being extremely motivated and hitting the gym multiple times a week to becoming a coach potato. The 2018 new year resolution is now to not rely on motivation but rely on myself to push me to do better.