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Start With Why

Simon Sinek has made a name for himself as the founder of what he describes as a “movement to build a world in which the vast majority of us are inspired by the work we do.”   Although he focuses on work in much of his book, TED talk, etc., his focus on “why?” applies to virtually any human endeavor, including physical fitness.  Starting with why can help you choose a new fitness program or new athletic goal wisely – a program that will get you not just the results you want, but for the reasons you want.


Sinek’s approach is based on a simple reversal of the normal order of argument in our lives.  We generally live in the practical, everyday “What” level – what am I eating, what am I doing when I go to the gym today, what will I do tomorrow?  Then we tackle the practical problems that those “what’s” create – how will I get the ingredients to make what I’ll eat, which exercise program should I follow & what does it say to do today, what needs to be done today to be ready for tomorrow.  Those constitute How we accomplish What we want to do.  But what drives all of this is – or should be – WHY we want these things.

By starting with Why, then moving to How we will act to implement our Why, and finally implementing with What actionable steps to take, our actions are guided by our deepest values and beliefs.  When these drive us, we take action, and live more fully, more completely.

At CrossFit Slipstream, we are guided by our Why: to improve your overall health, wellbeing, and help you create the best version of you.  See our full mission statement here.

Notice that this starts with YOU – what is it you seek from “physical fitness”?  To win your age group?  To keep up with the (grand)kids?  To return to an active lifestyle after injury?  To find a fitness program that keeps you interested, so you stick with it?

Our intake process focuses on you, and asks you to consider your “Why”.  This often requires digging into some reasons you might not want to share.  That is ok.  But you need to be honest with yourself about your Why.  Fitness goals often come in the form of “lose 10 pounds,” “look good on the beach,” or the like.  Those are “What” statements.  “Why” statements deal with the underlying purpose, which could be improved health, to avoid spending money on more clothes, to attract a mate, to make someone jealous, and virtually any other motive under the sun.  You do not have to share your “Why” with us if you don’t want to.  But the clearer your understanding of your Why, the more likely you are to stick with the program we develop to help you reach it.  Contact me today if you’d like help working toward your Why.

–John Bryant

Founder & Head Trainer


Related: What Do You DO at a CrossFit Box?