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KEY POINTS:

1. Intrinsic motivation is a more powerful motivator than extrinsic motivation for people over both the short and long term.

2. Ask yourself why to understand your internal motivation. Why do you want to improve your performance? 

3. If you focus on what drives you from the inside, you will find it a lot easier to implement the new skills, knowledge, and techniques that we're discussing to help you achieve your dreams.

TODAY’S EXERCISE: THE 5 WHYS

Fill out the “5 Whys” exercise on page 27 of your Athlete Workbook.

Take a look at your dreams and goals that you filled out at the beginning of the program and then ask yourself why? Why do you want to achieve those things?

More on the Power of Why

When I was working as a coach and physiologist with Olympic-level athletes, one memorable moment stood out to me.

We were in the middle of a set at a training camp and I yelled, “C’mon pick it up, let’s go!!!” He stopped, looked at me, and with venom in his voice replied, “I know how to push myself!” He went on to do a great training set, and we didn’t say much after that - and the workout was awesome. He didn't need external motivation; his internal drive was already powerful enough to get to the podium.

This moment highlights a key aspect of motivation. Successful athletes are powerfully motivated intrinsically (within the body and mind). They want to reach their potential because that’s what they love doing. They are not motivated extrinsically by anything outside themselves, such as me yelling. I’d forgotten that. According to sport psychology, extrinsic motivation works well in the short term but not so well over time. Intrinsic motivation is a more powerful motivator for people over both the short and long term.

I want you to think about your intrinsic motivation. This program is all about helping you to improve your performance. Sometimes things will get tough and you will regress or get off track. But if you’re aware of your “why” – why you are working hard to improve – you will recover very quickly. 

Why do you want to get a best time? Why do you want to win more games? Why do you want to make a provincial or national team? If you focus on what drives you from the inside, you will find it a lot easier to implement the new skills, knowledge, and techniques that will help you achieve your dreams.


The information and advice provided in this program is intended to assist you with improving your performance, as well as your general health. It is intended to compliment your training plan and not instead of guidance from your coach. It should also not be used in place of advice from a doctor or for treatment or diagnosis of any specific health issue. By participating in this program you assume any risks, and that you release Impactic Sport from any responsibility or claim relating to such participation.