Starting a Fitness Journey: Know Your ‘Why’

So, you’ve decided to join a gym with some vague fitness goals in mind. After some time you realise these goals are lacking focus and direction. You become confused about how you can work towards any specific objective. Your training sessions are unstructured and unfulfilling. With a lack of results or progress, you start to lose interest, train less frequently and find yourself cancelling your gym membership. Sound familiar? Maybe if you’d known your ‘why’ from the outset, there could have been a different outcome. In this blog I explain the importance of understanding your goals for training and the ‘why’ behind them. I hope to help you get to know your ‘why’.

What’s driving you?

At the start of most fitness journeys, the goals people set themselves, most commonly, are to become fitter, stronger and more toned. Now, if I were to ask to you why this is your goal, would you be able to answer that question in any level of detail? If not, consider whether your motivation is driven by any of the following:

  • To improve the quality of your daily life.
  • Be a better role model to your family.
  • Increase your vitality and longevity.
  • Improve mental wellbeing by creating “me time”.
  • Make progress within a specific sport you play/enjoy.
  • Become technically better in a particular movement.
  • Look better naked.

You can see from this how broad and far reaching fitness goals can be. They are entirely subjective and personal. No goal is a bad or less worthy goal. It therefore follows that there isn’t a ‘one-size-fits-all’ type of fitness programme.

Clarifying your ‘why’

As a coach, I would be much better positioned to help a client if they came to me and said “I want to become stronger/fitter as I want to be able to squat 70kg and train for a marathon in two year’s time”. Now, that’s the kind of ‘why’ I like! Knowing the ‘why’ behind the goal, I can now add the necessary tools to help get you there.

Here are two further examples:

Client 1 wants to be stronger for longevity so they can keep up with their grandchildren in later years.
Client 2 wants to be stronger to pursue a career in competitive powerlifting.

What will be required in their training regime, nutrition and potential lifestyle changes will be different due to their specific ‘why’. The term “stronger” serves two different purposes here, as the goals are relative to the individuals. This allows me as their coach to design a programme which aligns with their objectives rather than setting a generic training plan which won’t yield results.

Know your ‘why’ – Next Steps

To summarise, before you can agree how, when and what your training plan should look like, you need to know your ‘why’ first. It makes the training process a lot more efficient moving forward. You may have multiple goals for different aspects of your life and these might well shift or change as the journey continues. If you are needing some clarity with figuring out your ‘why’, understanding your goals or need guidance before starting your fitness journey, feel free to contact me.

Coach Sam Saunders

Instagram @samsaunderscoach