Why Do You Train?


"What is your Why?" seems to be a popular buzz phrase lately. I hear it being asked in the fitness industry quite a bit.

And not without good reason.

Flat out, if a person's only purpose for wanting to train is, "I just wanna tone," they will fail. Period. Maybe they'll stick it out for a while, and maybe they'll even see some results. But, once they hit that first plateau, or a deadline comes up at work, or January magically turns into February, they'll fall off the wagon.


  1. Training hurts. For many, working out is a form of self-inflicted torture, and even the most sadistic of us sadists would have a hard time continuing to voluntarily undergo bodily harm for no reason.
  2. Committing to a program takes time and dedication. We're all busy, and we all want immediate gratification. It's true, planning our day around going to the gym can be tricky, and not seeing the results you're looking for may very well be the most frustrating thing in the entire world.
  3. Gym memberships, personal training, nutrition plans, supplements...the list goes on. And as it does, your bank account takes a hit. Most of us don't live in homes that smell of rich mahogany, so it can be easy to cut the training expenses when funds are running low.

This list is by no means exhaustive, but they're the most common examples of the excuses we all face at some point. It's when our list becomes longer than usual, or our justifications for taking a leave of absence start to sound too good to pass up, that we have to make a decision: to train, or not to train? Here's where our respective Why's comes in handy.

Your Why is that deep seeded, hidden, and sometimes painful, motivating factor that keeps you moving regardless of the body aches, time, or cost. It's the source of that voice in the back of your head that chimes in when your lungs start burning, saying: "You can't quit. Quit and you'll never forgive yourself. Quit and you'll be letting down the people you love most. Quit and you'll always be a quitter...too weak and too afraid to become the person you want to see in the mirror."

Your Why is your emotional tie to the training process. It's the meaning behind the sweat and the soreness; it's the purpose of your efforts.

Maybe you do it to set a good example for your kids. Maybe you were bullied growing up, and you've vowed to never feel that helpless again. Or maybe you won Silver at the Olympics four years ago, and you'll be damned if you come home with anything less than Gold this time around.

We all have our reasons for training, and they're never as simple as we think. So dig. Get passed the images of six pack abs or dat booty, and figure out why the hell you want to change so badly. Or you never will.

What's your why?