It’s a question that everyone has to confront as they face their own challenges, but for an international athlete ‘motivation’ is everything as they push themselves to their limits and beyond. For someone such as our Athlete Ambassador Sammi Kinghorn, who has had to overcome the kind of adversity few face, the word has even more meaning. In her latest blog she shares what drives her forward every single day, the need to take control of life choices, and how she loves to pass this on to the young people she mentors across the country.
Motivation is different to everyone. To some it means simply getting up in the morning. To me it is to win a gold medal at the Paralympics.
But in order to do that I need to try to stay motivated every single day - which is the hard bit, especially in the winter. The cold really affects me and I feel it more than others so there is a huge temptation just to stay inside, or some days you just simply can’t be bothered.
That’s when I guilt trip myself into action. I say to myself that when I am sitting on that Paralympic final start line with seven other athletes, I cannot be looking along the line and thinking that I’m not as prepared as they are because I didn’t get up and train that morning and they did. That’s what makes me get up and train as hard as I can - so that I can say when I get on that start line I gave it my all and I am as prepared as them.
The other BIG thing in my life that keeps me motivated is my family. I want to make them proud. This isn’t just in my sport but I want to make them proud of who I have become.
I also enjoy trying to motivate others, especially young people. I like teaching them about the differences that exist in society - that everyone is different and different isn’t bad.
Also, I tell that them that when I had my accident I was on a crossroads in my life. I could have gone down the road of depression or the one I chose of success.
I think that this helps them to believe that their life choices are up to them. Even if they do make a bad choice - like I did when I chose to climb on the forklift before my accident - they can still change their life and make a good one like I did.
I really hope that this motivates young people to succeed and to chase their dreams just like I am trying to do. Even though life does get tough, you can get through anything and achieve your dreams.
Sammi was recently welcomed by Jessica Ennis-Hill as Sky Academy Living for Sport ‘Athlete Mentor’ – one of more than 90 sports stars across the country who work with young people to help them develop life skills, build confidence and unlock their potential.
You can find out more about Harper Macleod and Sammi here.
You can see the short film we made with Sammi as she trained around her Borders home here.