Friday, August 01, 2008

Low Motivation

It's funny just how accurate this little triangle can be some times. I can barely remember discussing it in college psychology 101 class: Maslow's Hierarchy Of Needs. In a nutshell, (as if I truly understand it, shaaah...) lower needs in the pyramid take priority over higher ones. Until a pressing problem in a lower level need gets fulfilled, it's dang hard to focus on needs in a higher level.

Now again, I'm not expert, but I'd put fitness and racing in the "Esteem" level of this pyramid. I'm sure one can make an argument that fitness is very much physiological, but it would take a lot of convincing to make me a believer. I've been fortunate in life that my own personal physiological needs tend to be pretty "healthy". I've never been in such dire straits that my sole focus has been at that level. Thankfully!

But very easily, I believe, one can find themselves in the "Safety" needs level. Get yourself short of cash - I mean really short, like "how in the heck are we gonna pay the rent this month" short, and when your diet consists of Ramean noodles and PB&J's for 2 out of 3 meals or worse, and you are there. Unfortunately there are many important things that take a back seat when you sink to that level. Friendships, family relationships, spousal interaction...and it's weird. It's not like you don't have the time, you just don't have the energy....

Of course, these "levels" are not absolute, and a person will devote energy and resources to areas that need attending to while still operating at a higher level. Hence, a relationship may get strained while you put more hours in at work, but one wouldn't give up the relationship totally, for example.

Maslow calls the "love/belonging" level a Social level. It's interesting to me that as important to many the relationships formed in "blog-land" and even the therapeutic effect that maintaining a blog has for some, there will still come time in all of our lives when the blog - the relationships - will take a back seat to more pressing needs. That's just natural - unfortunate - but it's the way things are.

So, for whatever reason - perhaps it's the echo in the bank account, or the lack of satisfaction with my business, or wanting to spend more time at home with my wife - or - I'm just dang burned out from all the training...I'm having a hard time finding the motivation to train. It's been 5 weeks now since Iroman CdA...and I've only run once for all of 2 miles. Sure, I sweat my ba**&ack off every day out cutting grass, and fortunately I've only gained 6 lbs in 5 weeks, but somewhere I need to find the motivation. Or get all those other damn needs taking care of. And quick!

6 comments:

tri-dogmom said...

I think good things are up next for you & Di... I understand it can be hard to see the light, but I belive it will come, as will your motivation!

Cindy Jo said...

I think I've gained 5 pounds in TWO weeks!

I don't think I'll ever make it to that very top level of that pyramind, FWIW...

Brent Buckner said...

Yeah, endurance training has a lot going for it, but it is a HUGE time suck.

21stCenturyMom said...

I kind of know what you mean. I think the antidote is to sign up for a race - not an IM, but something. All races require some level of training and having a race on the horizen can get you from "must train" "must follow the plan" to "want to train" "need the endorphin rush". It always works - right?

Iron "GeekGirl" Misty said...

I felt pretty low motivation after my first ironman. What helped me was doing some events that I enjoyed. FOr me that was marathons. Maybe you can find some nice rides that aren't races, or something like that.

ironshane said...

Dude, this is really weird. Remember our coincidence with the word "character" last year? Well...you've done it again. I've spent the last several weeks researching for and writing an e-course for my new venture with Big J. Guess what the topic is? MOTIVATION. And Mr. Maslow definitely shows up there, and his entire hierarchy. You're freaking me out a little, man.

You probably just need a little time off. You'll come back, I'm sure of it. :)