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How to Develop Motivation like the Fastest Woman on the Planet | Sports Training

How to Develop Motivation like the Fastest Woman on the Planet | Sports Training

Athlete Training Mission Brief: When it comes to athlete training it is important that we learn what motivates us and others. The mission of this athlete training article is to provide us with the tactical tools to gain clarity on how motivation works.

Greatness in sports requires the ability and focus to endure tens of thousands of repetitions.  To turn dreams into reality requires a clear vision of what we want, a powerful self-belief, and a deeply felt sense of intrinsic motivation to do what Jerry Rice famously said, “I do what others can’t do today so I can do what others can’t do tomorrow.”


On the beautiful evening of August 17th, 2008 Shelly-Ann Fraser was one of three Jamaicans who lined up for the Olympic final of the women’s 100 meters sprint. The race to determine the fastest woman alive. There was no clear favorite. Although Shelly-Ann had won all three of her qualifying rounds, she was still considered a track outsider. She felt the excitement in the air.

Very few people in the world had heard of her before the Jamaican trials two months earlier, but they knew about her now. Her diminutive stature, barely 5 feet tall – gave Shelly-Ann the ability to literally spring out of the blocks. As they were called to the start, Fraser wore an expression of exhilaration, little ShellyAnn Fraser from the Waterhouse ghetto, was in the Olympic final. She was in lane four, the sprinters patiently waited for the gun. The World felt the anticipation.

BOOM, the gun went off…

She was the fastest out of the blocks, and she turned it up even more in the second half of the race. She won the race with an earth-shattering time of 10.78 seconds. What was going through Shelly-Ann’s mind when she crossed the finish line? She was thinking about how far she had come, where she came from, and the hard work she put in over the previous two years.

“I remembered the struggles, I remembered growing up in Waterhouse, the fact that no one wanted me to run, telling my coach I was too tired, that I couldn’t do it. I remembered all that.”

Shelly-Ann was quoted after the record-breaking race. So a quick question for you?

What motivates you? __________________________

To reach big goals requires a unique, noticeable level of grit, determination, thousands of hours of intense sports training, and pull power.

Jim Rohn was an American entrepreneur, author and motivational speaker. His rags to riches story played a large part in his work, which influenced others in the personal development industry. This is how he describes pull power: “Dreams are a projection of the kind of life you want to lead. Dreams can drive you. Dreams can make you skip over obstacles. When you allow your dreams to pull you, they unleash a creative force that can overpower any obstacle in your path. To unleash this power, though, your dreams must be well-defined. A fuzzy future has little pullpower. Well-defined dreams are not fuzzy. Wishes are fuzzy. To really achieve your dreams, to really have your future plans pull you forward, your dreams must be vivid.” This is how the dictionary defines the word vivid: “forming distinct and striking mental images.” Getting on the path to peak performance and developing extraordinary talent REQUIRES that we form a distinct and striking mental image of what we want. So, I’m asking you right now, can you answer these questions…

What athletic dream is currently pulling at you?


Is your dream vivid and well defined?


Why is this athletic goal important to you?


By entering into this high-performance path you will consistently face adversity and challenges, how will you respond?



Shelly-Ann Fraser-Price grew up in one of Jamaica’s hardest communities known as Waterhouse. She lived in a one-room apartment, sleeping four to a bed with her mom and two brothers. Waterhouse is one of the most impoverished communities in Jamaica. It has many of the same challenges that communities in poverty around the world face every moment of every day. Violence, stress, death, and disease.

It is a hood so notorious that it was name-checked in Jay Z’s ‘Real as It Gets’. Several of Shelly-Ann’s friends and family were caught up in the tornado of the neighborhood, and one of her cousins was shot dead only a few streets away from where she lived.

One day while Shelly-Ann was at school, her cousin Dwayne was shot dead; three days later his baby was born. On another day, her uncle Corey was gunned down. Shelly-Ann’s mother Maxime, came from a family of fourteen, had been an athlete herself when she was younger but decided to stop when she had Shelly-Ann’s oldest brother Omar when she was a teenager.

When Shelly-Ann was born she felt a strong sense of determination to help her and her two brothers climb out of the Waterhouse neighborhood. As Shelly-Ann grew she felt her mom’s encouragement and belief. It did not take long for her to realize that sports and athlete training could be her way out of Waterhouse.

When she won the gold medal in Beijing in 2008, the victory she felt was deeper than track. Shelly-Ann had honed her sprinting in Waterhouse by running past the gangs of men on the block, as her mother told her to do. The night she won the Olympic Gold in Beijing, the routine murders in Waterhouse, and the drug wars within the humid streets ceased to exist.

The poverty, crime, and despair that residents felt wrapped up in like a mummy lifted for a few days. Shelly-Ann explained it this way to the Daily Mail after her Olympic triumph: ‘I didn’t become just another Waterhouse statistic but someone who could uplift the community, who showed something good could come from anywhere in Jamaica – even the ghetto.”

She felt the significance…

She wasn’t just doing this for herself. She was doing this for her mom, she was doing this for her little cousin whose father was murdered, she was doing this for all of Waterhouse.


Shelly-Ann’s record-breaking success was driven by a confluence of factors that when blended together provided her with the pull power and grit to accomplish incredible things.

This is the reason why having a clear vision of what motivates you is so important because there are going to be innumerable obstacles in your way to you getting what you want.

You need to have the determination and tool kit to overcome these obstacles. Sports and Athletics are Super Competitive.  Isn’t that kinda the whole point:)

Angela Duckworth is the world’s leading authority on the science of Grit.

Grit is a skill that we can develop. Grit is a skill needed in high-performance sports training and grit is a skill that can be developed through high-level sports training.  This is Good:)

And just like with any other skill we want to break it down into its components.

Angela Duckworth’s research has found that the skill of Grit is made up of four components:

1) Interest: If we want sustainable passion, we need to be intrinsically drawn to what we do. It needs to fire us up. We need to love it. We all have aspects of our athlete training that are not enjoyable, but we’re just not going to put in the effort over the long run unless we, like the gritty peak performers we admire, have a “relentless fascination and obsessive curiosity” and “practically shout, ‘I love what I do!’”

2) Practice: A key component of perseverance is the ability to discipline ourselves to show up every single day with an attitude of “Whatever it takes, I want to improve.  Whatever it takes, I want to improve.  Whatever it takes, I want to improve.”

3) Purpose:   Purpose is all about seeing that our athlete training matters. It’s essential that we love what we do, but we’re not going to sustain our interest over the long run if it’s just about us. We need to make the connection to something bigger than ourselves. Just like with Shelly-Ann and her deep connection to her mother and Waterhouse.4) Hope: Hope defines every stage of grit. It’s the “rising-to-the-occasion” kind of perseverance in which we have the belief that we have the ability to achieve what we set out to do.

“If we stay down, grit loses. If we get up, grit prevails.”

How do you rank yourself on a scale of 1 to 10 of the four different components that make up Grit?

__________________________ How much interest do I have in the sport I’m playing (1 to 10) __________________________

More importantly, how much interest do I have in doing the athlete training and sports training necessary to become my best?

How consistently do I train/practice with high intensity and total focus. _________________________

When I am competing, I feel like I am competing for something bigger than myself?

Yes or no? __________________________


Have you ever heard of “activation energy”?

It’s the amount of energy needed to start a chemical reaction.

The dictionary tells us that it’s “the minimum quantity of energy that the reacting species must possess in order to undergo a specified reaction.”

Water only boils once it reaches its activation energy point of 212 degrees. 100 degrees certainly won’t do it. 200 degrees won’t do it. Not even 210 degrees will do it.

Simmering, but no boiling. Want to get that water to boil?

You need to get that heat all the way up to 212.

Then you’ll undergo the “specified reaction” and see and feel the boil.

The same rules apply with fire. 451 degrees is the magic number there.

If you rub two sticks together and get to 400 degrees?

Nothing. 449? Nothing. 450? Nothing. 451?

Here comes the flame. Activation energy. All of which is to arrive at this question:

Are we simmering or are we boiling? Because if we’re not willing to flip the switch and goal in, you won’t hit the necessary activation energy required to undergo the specified reaction of stepping into your path of peak performance.

This is a PERFECT EXAMPLE of why we make “FEROCITY” one of our 3 Sports Training Principles.

Shelly-Ann Fraser Price hit her necessary activation energy. It’s time for us to do the same thing. Let’s do this!

Let’s get better today,
Coach Jackson
Premier Speed Academy
Change of Direction University
Champion School.
Fast Twitch Prep.

Coach Jackson
Coach Jackson
Master’s Degrees in Education (Specializing in the Work of Abraham Maslow and Human Potential) and an MBA in International Leadership and Coaching. He is a N.A.S.E certified Speed and Explosion Specialist and Optimize Coach.
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