We all know the sound. The faint, slow chirp of reality creeping into our dreams as we sleep. The sound of what we thought were ocean waves, but as they get stronger, we recognise the familiar tone of our phone beside the bed, pulling us into the tangible world. We reluctantly muster the motivation to open half an eye. We robotically reach out an arm to swipe snooze. But it’s too late. That remote beach we were dreaming of is a distant memory, and we are already battling our conscience to stay five more minutes, or bite the bullet and get up.

It’s not that I don’t love what I do. It’s not that I’m not motivated to be the best volleyball player I can. It’s just that I love sleep, and I was probably a cat in a previous life.

So I fight the grogginess like a zombie as I go through the typical morning routine; cereal and milk, a scroll over Instagram and the news, and a quick brush of the teeth. I throw a change of clothes in my backpack and practically crawl out the door.

The way I’m feeling today, I wonder how I’m going to survive a full gym session. I feel like I could barely lift a kitten, and he wants me to put how many kilos on the bar?

“Alright I’ll ease into it” I think to myself. But as time passes, I can feel my mindset starting to change.

“Well if she can do that much weight, so can I”…”If this is how much I did last week, then I can definitely go up on the last set”… “Push!”

Ciara Michel

A few minutes ago it was a mission just to put one foot in front of the other. Now I’m competing with my teammates and challenging myself to beat personal records. By the time I’ve finished my program, I’m pumped up and feel like I could go another round.

That’s the feeling that you and I know first-hand as athletes. We’ve all experienced some form of transformation from basically the walking dead, into Rocky Balboa. The point is, you’re allowed to have days where you just don’t feel like doing it. Even the pros have days where we would rather stay a few hours longer in bed.

Maybe like me, you have a little “Notebook of Motivation” filled with quotes and tidbits from your favourite players to get you ‘in the mood’ before training. Or you have some supplements that give you an energy kick at just the right moment. Or maybe you’re just extremely competitive and don’t want to be beaten…at anything.

But the important thing is that you do it. You get to the gym, and you go to training. And when you are there, having the right attitude combined with a motivation and focus on your goals is what will get you results.

In the national team, we had a saying; “fake it till you make it”. If you weren’t in the mood to push yourself in the weight room, or you didn’t feel confident taking the court against a world powerhouse like Italy or Russia, just fake it! Puff out your chest, put a smile on your face, roll up your sleeves and get ready to work. Because once you’re there, anything can happen…with the right mindset.

So, stay motivated and stay tuned!



Have you had days like this? What do you do to keep yourself motivated? Leave us a comment or send us an email, and be on the lookout for new articles with effective and applicable advice from all our VolleyScience contributors.