Many times friends and family outside of my CrossFit world ask me why I spend so much time training and working out.
My quick reply to them is, “I don’t want anyone to help me wipe my ass!”
Let me explain. This all started many years ago when I was newly married and just getting started in my adult life. During this time, my wife and I would call on my ever-so-helpful father-in-law to help us with numerous things: painting our new house, installing a dishwasher, tearing out and replacing flooring, etc.
All of these projects ended with me telling my father-in-law, “Thank you, I owe you one!” His quick reply was always, “Don’t worry, you will be the first one I call.”
For a while, this was how it would always go—when I needed something, I’d call him and he was there for us.
Well one day near the completion of a three day wood floor installation project, I stopped mid hammer throw and said, “I don’t know how I would have gotten this done without you; thank you so much. I really owe you one.” He, of course, replied, “Don’t worry, you will be the first one I call!”
This time though, for some reason, I didn’t let it end there. I asked, “What exactly do you mean?” He replied, “When I need someone to wipe my ass, you will be the first one I call.”
He was, of course, joking (at least that’s what I tell myself), and in all seriousness and sincerity—if he ever needs it, I will be there for him. But it struck a nerve and got me thinking about my own motivation, my own “why” when it comes to the early and long hours at TreeTown, pushing my limits.
So where am I going with all this?
Why you come to the gym or why you decide to take care of yourself has to be greater than your desire to eat that donut, have a second helping, sip on that soda, drink that beer, or stay up all night.
You need a greater purpose, something stronger than sitting on the couch, to help get you off your butt and get moving. For me, it’s a fear of having to ask someone for help wiping my ass, or having my son, Wil, take my car keys one day. My “why” is prolonged independence and capability later in life. My “why” is being fit enough to help my kids and their families with those demanding house projects well into my senior years.
Your “why” doesn’t have to be quite so far-reaching as mine. Yours could be as simple as, “I love to sweat. I like to push myself to see what I’m made of. I love seeing my friends.” It could be you confronting a history of heart disease or diabetes in your family. It could be to have abs. Better abs. Great abs. Cheese grater level abs.
Whatever it is for you, if it’s a strong enough desire, it will get you moving and out the door and keep you on track!
So if I see you and ask, “What is your ‘why’?” be ready! Having that answer in the forefront of your mind will give you purpose, a goal to stick too, determination to make it through a tough workout, a drive to be a better version of yourself.
And thanks, Dad, for helping me find my “why!”