Exercise Scientist Gives a Harsh Reality Check to People Seeking Motivation to Go to the Gym: “You Don’t Want It Enough”

Published 02/22/2024, 2:28 AM EST

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In a world filled with gym hype and flashy fitness tales, it’s easy to fall for the allure of sculpted bodies and motivational mantras. But what if there’s a less glamorous truth? What if consistent gym trips depend on a reality check? Enter the raw insights of Dr. Mike Israetel, cutting through clichés.

In a recent Instagram post, Dr. Mike boldly delivers a reality check to those chasing gym motivation: “You don’t want it enough.” Let’s explore the unfiltered truth behind his gym motivation.

Dr. Mike Israetel’s perspective on people who seek motivation


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Fitness influencer Chris Williamson shared a snippet of an interview of Dr. Mike Israetel’s post on his Instagram. While discussing motivation and inspiration to start the gym, he stated, “If you have to ask how to get motivated to go to the gym, you don’t need to be going to the gym. You don’t want it enough.” It’s a blunt truth that cuts through the noise of well-intentioned but often sugar-coated advice.



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Israetel argues that the turning point comes when you’re “sick and tired of looking and feeling like sh*t.” That’s the moment when the mirror becomes your ally, reflecting a determination that says, “Enough is enough.” It’s not about watching another Rocky Balboa movie for motivation; it’s about reaching that personal breaking point.

To make the gym a lifestyle, the scientist suggests a two-pronged approach: “lowering barriers and raising the impetus.” Lowering barriers involves making the gym more accessible – both financially and geographically. Finding training partners, selecting enjoyable exercises, and making the entire experience less daunting are crucial. On the flip side, raising the impetus involves setting clear goals, fostering aspirations, and nurturing a genuine desire to be in that space.

Dr. Mike emphasizes, to begin with, smaller goals

The scientist emphasizes that those effortlessly showing up at the gym are the ones who truly want to be there. It’s not about external motivation; it’s about cultivating an internal drive that fuels your journey. Starting easy is the key, according to the scientist. Two or three times a week, 30 to 45-minute workouts – a gentle introduction to the habit. Progress at a pace that suits you, making it easy on yourself initially. As the habit solidifies, intensify your workouts, and watch as the desire to be at the gym grows naturally.


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In a world where quick fixes and instant transformations are often glorified, the exercise scientist’s approach is refreshingly pragmatic. It’s about understanding your own journey, acknowledging the struggle, and gradually building a lifestyle that revolves around the gym.

So, the next time you contemplate skipping the gym or find yourself in need of motivation, ask yourself: Do you really want it enough? The mirror doesn’t lie, and neither does your internal drive. It’s time to embrace the reality check and embark on a fitness journey that’s not just about the destination but the transformative process itself. The gym awaits, but the choice is yours.


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Written by:

Arpita Shrivastava


One take at a time

Arpita Shrivastava is a bodybuilding writer at EssentiallySports who specializes in tracking the lifestyles of bodybuilders. A master’s degree holder in Mass Communication, Arpita is a frequent contributor to coverage about her idols Ronnie Coleman and Jay Cutler. She likes going behind the scenes to understand the nitty-gritty of building a shredded physique.
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Edited by:

Tushhita Barua