Tuesday, January 26, 2010

What's your motivation?

I've been hanging out with a whole different crowd of people at the YMCA this week. And I guess I have furlough to thank for it.

Normally I head over to the YMCA after work - we're talking about 5:30 p.m. - and get there with all of the other folks who have just escaped the daily grind at their respective work places. There are some casual folks and some intense folks. A nice mix of people.

But this week, since I'm on furlough (For those of you who aren't blessed to get this experience I think of it as a forced, unpaid vacation. In reality, it's my company's solution to try to keep costs down and not have to lay off anymore employees) I've been showing up a bit earlier in the day. I'm not talking about early mornings. No. No. No. I'm taking advantage of this week to get reacquainted with my snooze button and lounge around in my pjs for a bit. Once the clock hits 1 p.m., I figure the lunch crowd will be gone, so I head on over for the workout.

And the crowd that remains? It's a bit, um, geriatric. Not so old they can barely walk, but probably about the age my grandparents would be if they were still alive. Upper 60s, lower 70s. But dang, they're moving good for that age. They spend their time on the treadmills and elliptical machines. Some head over to the weights. Very cool.

But there's this one guy who's a bit interesting. A bigger guy. Younger. But obviously there with the goal to shed some weight. And kudos to him for trying to make the healthy change. Normally I wouldn't take a second look. But I had to.

See I was running yesterday and he got on the treadmill next to me, carrying this large-ish binder. A multi-tasker, I thought, probably going to do some work-related reading while getting in some walking. So I kept running. He started up the treadmill, tuned the attached TV to a random channel, flipped open the binder and started walking.

I didn't think much of it. But I happened to glance over. And that binder? It wasn't full of pages containing words. No. It was pages of pictures. As in, Christopher Reeve clad in his Superman outfit was staring at me from the treadmill. Along with some beauty pageant contestant wearing swimwear.


And every so often he'd flip to another set of pictures. I'm not kidding, this binder probably had 80 t0 100 pages of these pictures. And it wasn't a fluke. Same thing happened today. More beauty pageant contestants. More Superman.

But it got me to thinking, everyone has different things that motivate them. Me? I tend to go with song lyrics or quotes. Or set goals that I want to work towards accomplishing. And maybe that's what this guy was doing, using the pictures as motivation for sticking to these lifestyle changes he was making in an effort to get healthy. Or maybe he wants to look like Superman.

So that's the question, what motivates you guys?


Head over to Marlene's blog, Mission to a(nother) Marathon. She's got a sweet Lift Your Sole giveaway going!


Mark said...

Great post! That guy's got a goal...basically that's my motivator. I set a goal.

teacherwoman said...

That motivation seems a bit odd to me, but what ever floats your boat, right?

I agree with Mark, setting a goal is my motivator!

Teamarcia said...

Maybe he's a casting director looking for someone for a movie. A stretch but if not, that's pretty weird in my book.

My motivator is health, I'm running away from my genetic predisposition toward heart disease.

Nat said...

Okay, that just made my day. I laughed so hard as that was not what I expected to be in the binder! Although, I know someone who does that and puts up pictures of what she wants to look like in her bathroom. A leeetttle different though than carrying them around in a binder!

Marlene said...

Thanks for the giveaway link!

My gym seems to have more of the 'desperate housewife' types that time of day...

Superman, huh? Well, like you said... we are all motivated in different ways. For me, it's good music and the adrenaline rush!

Carolina John said...

that's hilarious! he wants to look like superman. Good for him. I like to read Men's Health, it has the same effect. hang out with a bunch of gay men regularly and you will also start craving abs.

music gives me the beat to keep going, but i'm always goal motivated. got to know when my next race is and how i'm going to reach that finish line.

Suzy said...

Everyone has their own thing...his is, well, his. Feeling good and knowing I can eat lots of food is usually motivation enough for me. Although, watching TV or movies while on the treadmill do make it easier - but they aren't motivating.

Anonymous said...

great post! I love that he's motivated enough to not let it bother him that others might see his motivation as odd. Did that make sense? Basically, good for him for doing what he needs to do and not letting others' perceptions get in the way.

For me, it's just how much better I feel now that I'm eating healthier and doing good things for myself. Plus, it's always amazing to think back at those times when I said "I could never run" and see what I've acomplished so far. Never say never. :)