Archive for June 2, 2009

Championship Psychology/Love Motivation

Posted in Championship Psychology on June 2, 2009 by bethleasure

Invincible Strength

24“This is the result of team work…to sacrifice their chances for me. They helped me with my morale, they helped make sure my dream came true.  Carlos Sastre, Tour de France winner


Winner Carlos Sastre is hugged by teammate Kurt-Asle Arvesen

Winner Carlos Sastre is hugged by teammate Kurt-Asle Arvesen

Superlative athletic feats happen for love of others in connection, such as team and close supporters. The relationship between motivation and emotion is a basic psychological principle. Love affiliated with others as motivator 25ranks higher than achievement, knowledge, beauty or fulfillment. Even humanistic theories for motivation rank love just under bodily comfort and safety.

Bike racing is hardly about bodily comfort or security and much effort is expended in professional development in managing and even displacing these two motivators for the sake of achievement. The key is not to allow love to also be displaced but to let it rise to the fore of cycling motivation. An inanimate bicycle doesn’t love us but it is a means to transport love.

Motivating love can look like anger if for instance, the safety of family is threatened and anger fuels a fight for protection, but anger isn’t sustainable. Love of the work of riding is an intrinsic motivator. A pro has gotta love the grind as much as the glory, and if you don’t like hours of ride time over years, then you’re on the wrong path and I pray you find another route as a rider. Love of praise through race results is an extrinsic motivator. Yet even winning can be empty if there’s no love for the work.

Further, popular motivational theory claims that love of the work is enough, but it’s not and neither is the praise of others and neither are the two combined. Championship motivation is more advanced. The kind of strength that comes only from love has to do with love from and for others. A heart flooded with love pours out for love like a consuming fire that fuels invincible performance.


Prayer for Love Motivation
Love is invincible…the fire of love stops at nothing— it sweeps everything before it.” 26Song of Solomon 8:6-8 

It has been said that no one can truly love another until first being loved. We understand that God loves each of us and we pray to be filled by this love. We ask to understand God’s love for us as cyclists. We pray to use our bikes to give and receive love.

Ponder Have I thought of riding as an act of worship in gratitude for the ability to ride? Affirm I ride as an act of love for God and others. Watch a love motivation use the bike as a connection to community, and for performances that show gratitude for the support.

24“Sastre thanks team for Tour de France success,” by Francois Thomazeau; Reuters India Sat Jul 26, 2008

25“Motivation to learn: An overview,” by W. Huitt 2001. Educational Psychology Interactive, Valdosta State University, GA. Retrieved 8/08 from

 26The Message, Copyright © 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 2000, 2001, 2002 by Eugene H. Peterson