Monday, May 16, 2011

Competitive or Driven?

I always say I’m not a competitive person and I mean it—I don’t think I am.  Lately though I’ve been having this nagging inside me and these inner voices (oh crap am I crazy?) telling me to be better, go faster and push harder.  So what is that?  Is that being competitive or is that being driven? 

com·pet·i·tive /kəmˈpɛtɪtɪv/ –adjective  Having a strong desire to compete or to succeed.

 

driv·en/ˈdrivən/-- Adjective.  Motivated or determined by a specified factor or feeling.

I’ve talked about it before, but my workouts over time have become less and less about losing weight and looking good and more and more about doing better at events—Running faster, swimming stronger, and cycling without crashing.  Winking smile  Don’t get me wrong, I’d love nothing more than to do crunches all day and get a six pack, cause let’s face it, who doesn’t want to look good?  However, working towards a six pack never got me very far.  As a matter of a fact, working out to achieve perfection for my body only made me miserable. 

sdt finish5

For a while I’ve been trying to convince myself to workout solely for the purpose of achieving my goals, and NOT to lose weight.  I’d say lately it’s been a 50/50 split.  50% about achieving my goals and 50% about looking good. 

Today something happened that shocked me.  The whole time I was working out I kept thinking about what I was doing to make my body stronger.  How every repetition and every pound I used was helping me to gain strength.  As my legs get stronger or my core gets stronger, I will be a better runner.  As I was in spin and we had our gear cranked as high as it could go while still being able to turn the pedals, I was thinking about how it would help me tackle the big hills on my road bike.  I wasn’t thinking about my butt getting smaller.  I’m changing my way of thinking and it makes me excited. 

sdt funny face

So while I do have a strong desire to compete and succeed (competitive), I think I’m mostly just motivated by the feeling of getting stronger and being the best I (as in me/myself) can be (driven).  Call it what you want.  I call it a new way of thinking—I hope it catches on! 

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Thanks!  Hmmm maybe I am competitive!  Nah vote for all of us (except the ones ahead of me) Winking smile.

5 comments:

Tyly said...

Totally get it! The times that I've worked out solely for weight loss have always ended up in a bust. My mindset is different now. It's not about the number on the scale, it's about being stronger and more fit. Thanks for the reminder! :)

Ron said...

Definitely motivated :)

Tri4Success said...

And the light bulb comes on! This is absolutely the right mindset and you will be happier and more successful because of it. Working out to look good puts our focus on body image and no matter how in shape we get we will always fixate on the flaws. Working out to improve as an athlete puts the focus on our physical capabilities and those flaws are perceived differently .... as small challenges on the way to greatness! It's a much more positive approach.

TMB @ RACING WITH BABES said...

I totally relate to this post. I think I am competitive and driven. I think most endurance athletes are. I will admit though, people tell me I am overly competitive (I don't think so) and they don't like it. Oh well, I'm fine with it!

TMB @ RACING WITH BABES said...

I totally relate to this post. I think I am competitive and driven. I think most endurance athletes are. I will admit though, people tell me I am overly competitive (I don't think so) and they don't like it. Oh well, I'm fine with it!

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