Since the turn of the year, when I really began to train seriously, and maintain a clean diet, I found that one of the hardest things to contend with was in fact the questioning and doubts from people who have no interest in the gym. Almost on a daily basis I am asked questions along the lines of; 'is it worth it?', 'what's the point?' and 'why do you do it?'. This has prompted me on several occasions to have a look at my own motivations, and to constantly re-evaluate my goals.
The first motivation behind my training was just to become stronger, to stop being 'the small boy' in my class. After a couple of years I achieved this, but by then something had changed. It's hard to describe to people who haven't set foot in a gym before, but the sense of achievement and accomplishment that I feel when I see physical progress, and notice the change in my physique is second to none. I remember being back at school, and seeing one of our rugby coaches training with a set of weights, and thinking to myself 'I'll never be able to lift them', but now I'm able to train with weights heavier than that – and it is this sense of accomplishment that keeps driving me on.
After a couple of years, I moved my goal of improving strength to developing a more aesthetic body, and focussing on body-building, which is what I am training for to this day. The real motivation behind this comes from seeing the likes of Arnold, and more recently, Kai Greene, Phil Heath and others. I am constantly inspired by the dedication and training which these athletes have put into their goals, and being of a very stubborn character (so I'm told anyway..) I keep telling myself that, if they have been able to make sacrifices and dedicate time and effort to achieving what they have achieved, then so can I towards my goals.
'Is it worth it?', simply put, yes, it is. I am the healthiest that I have been in a long time, and I'm in the best physique that I have been in, and as every day passes, I'm getting even better, healthier and stronger. I think, most importantly though, and this is the crux behind 'why I do it', I'm really enjoying it, and I hope that is the same for everyone else making a difference to their lives.