Sources Of Motivation

Posted: December 29, 2010 in Uncategorized

One of my former TNT runners, John O’Brien, recently asked the following question:

“Rick, you’re an inspiration to so many runners…that said…how do you get so many people so motivated? How do you get them engaged and keep them interested?”

Without giving it a great deal of thought I responded:

Hello John,

Thank you for your kind comments and your interesting questions! There are several things that allow me to motivate runners and to sustain it over the course of our training.

My running history and experience provide a credible platform for everything that I do. My runners see that I am willing to do everything that I’m asking them to,  I’m not driving around drinking coffee telling them their form looks great; I cover the same distance, often more, during training each week.

I also try to get to know each of my runners as much as they allow. I am then able to identify what’s important to them. Connecting them to a purpose like finishing the Boston Marathon is a great place to start but taking it to another level (e.g., raising money to make a significant difference in the lives of others) is the capstone to a perfect motivation model.

I always try to be a great resource and provide advice that’s relevant to each stage of their training. I also always speak from my heart and have fun each week at training. The one significant variable that I feel separates me from a lot of coaches is passion…I love being a coach and inspiring others to do far more than they ever imagined!

That’s 90% of my keys to successfully motivating others…the other 10% I have to keep to myself !

Before long I realized I completely overlooked the obvious… runners are so easy to motivate!  My gestures to motivate them are analagous to ‘preaching to the choir.’  I have never known a more motivated group.  So my commitment now is to use my blog to share some of the most inspirational stories.  For instance, one of my runners smoked for 27 years and decided to quit and embark on an exercise program….imagine that!  Then he went on to miss qualifying for the Boston marathon by only 18 seconds.

Here is a recent article about Fran Curtis:

I have no doubt that Fran is going to qualify for Boston in April.  While I’m sure he would have preferred to qualify in New Hampshire, it will be particularly gratifying and special if he qualifies for Boston while running Boston.  I doubt that has happened very often.  I ran with Fran at training recently and admired how efficient and strong he was and I absolutely look forward to training and preparing him for Boston during the next four months.

Many of us are inspired by parents, teachers, coaches and leaders within our community.  However I have realized that we often just need to pay closer attention to the people right next to us for all the motivation we could ever need!

  1. terri says:

    Go Fran! That is very inspiring! Thank you!Will be reminding myself of that story as I run!

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