Dig deep (in your psyche) and give me one more rep

Earlier this week I wrote a post about goal setting (or intention setting, as I’m preferring to call it). We all know how important it is to set goals for ourselves; it gives us something to strive for and helps to keep us heading in the right direction when life throws us a curve ball.

Source: stayfitbug.com

While most people have no difficult telling you what their fitness goals are when you ask them (lose weight and run a half or full marathon are the two I’m hearing most frequently right now), very few can provide more than a superficial response when asked why they’ve chosen those specific goals over all other options.

“To improve my fitness level”

“To fit into my skinny jeans”

“Because all my friends are doing it” (as a parent of three school age children, I particularly love this last one!)

Valid responses, all three, but superficial, none-the-less.

Why do you want to improve your fitness? Are there health concerns associated with your current level of fitness? Is it you who wants to become fitter or have your friends/significant other/medical practitioner created this goal for you? (In addition to being superficial, this goal is non-specific; what aspects of fitness are you wanting to improve upon?)

Why do you want to fit into your skinny jeans? What does being thinner mean to you? Do you like yourself more (and assume that others will too) when you’re 10, 15, or 20 pounds lighter? If this is an issue for you, I suggest you check out ‘Appetites‘ by Geneen Roth; it’s a fantastic book about the relationship between body size and self-image. (I might just do a book review next week ’cause I loved it so much!)

What does running a half or full marathon signify to you? Are you doing it because you genuinely like to run or because it seems like the thing to do (particularly for women in their 40’s…) to demonstrate that you’re still young and vital?

Source: emotionaldetective.typepad.com

I frequently ask my personal training clients to look inside themselves and really question why they’re working towards a particular goal (some call this ‘navel-gazing’. Dig deep, into the inner workings of their own psyches and understand what really motivates their health and fitness goals.

Only once you’ve done the inside work, will the outside work get you closer to those goals.

I’d love to hear the ‘what’ and ‘why’ of your current fitness and health goals! Please add your comments below.

Check out the Friday Fitness Blog Hop by clicking on the link below! Happy Fitness Friday to all!

Life As I See It [Fitness, Health and Happiness]

Looking for an inexpensive way to jump-start your journey to fitness and health? Join my online Bootcamp today! Get more info by clicking the image below.

Looking for an inexpensive way to jump-start your journey to fitness and health? Join my online Bootcamp today! Get more info by clicking the image below.


  1. Funny you should talk about this because I took my sabatical for just this reason!

    WHY am I doing what I am doing.

    and YES, getting 5 of the 10 off has really given me a boost! I feel good, and that is a great feeling. It’s not about a number on the scale or skinny jeans, I just want to like how I look to ME and no body else!

    make sense?
    running is another hurdle (haha)
    giving that one some more reflection.
    Yoga I need!
    great post!!!

  2. My goals started for a variety of reasons but what kept me going and continuing beyond reaching my goals is the feeling of becoming the person I was meant to be. Truly finding that, for lack of better words, happy place.

    I’m often asked how I stay motivated or why do you run. And I have found that it’s difficult putting why I do what I do into words. During my run on Thurs with a friend we had this exact same conversation and I don’t think we ever came up with what we felt like was truly an answer to “why?” Something to think about during my long run today 🙂

    Great post!

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  3. I begin my fitness journey for vanity reasons (teenager) then as i got older my mothers family was riddled with so many diseases, i began training and eating clean for health reasons. Now i do it because I LOVE it. My goals are ever changing – muscle building, building strength, dropping fat. The cycle varies…but one thing never changes: My desire to be healthy and strong.

  4. I LOVE THIS POST, TAMARA! You are so dead on. What?… optimal fitness. Why?… dance!

  5. Great post! 🙂 My goals are to lose weight, feel strong and healthy!

  6. Thanks for stopping by my blog. I am definitely going to check out bodyrocktv tomorrow. So many people from the hop seem to enjoy it.

    april@Party of Five

  7. Hey, can I take another stab at it? When I responded I was in the middle of (unsuccessfully) trying to multitask. The whats of my current health and fitness goals: for the next few weeks, stick with the habit through the end of a trying time. Why’s on fitness: pain prevention (I have slight scoliosis – enough to require exercise to keep me pain-free); optimizing posture; optimizing energy and clarity; feeling good and great in my body and my clothes; and I love muscles and leanness; oh yeah, and keeping my organs and cardio system in solid working order. Thanks for addressing goals and motives, Tamara!

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  11. I used to be anorexic and my goal used to be ‘get thinner’. Thankfully I was able to fight that sickness and got into eating again. Now, I’m finding it really hard to maintain my body weight. I sometimes go to the gym and maybe do 10mins of dumbbell lifts or squats..
    Reading your article made me see the bigger picture of why I even work to live a healthier and fitter life. Along with the fact that it really changes your life, I’ve also been wanting to boost my confidence around people.