Motivation (and Purpose)

Motivation gets generally a bad rep. I thought so too. But after a short discussion with a friend about discipline, something caught my attention: For somebody having a low opinion about motivation, I sure have lots of motivational quotes, poster, pictures and music in my everyday life.


Let us clarify the terminology first:

Definition of motivation

  • 1a : the act or process of motivating
    b : the condition of being motivated
  • 2 : a motivating force, stimulus, or influence : INCENTIVE, DRIVE


Definition of purpose

  • 1a : something set up as an object or end to be attained : INTENTION
  • 2 : a subject under discussion or an action in course of execution


From my understanding of these definitions, motivation and purpose seem like they need each other. Or at least work well together.

Let me think

The bad reputation stems from the common misapplication of motivation. Everybody knows the meme about full gyms after silvester. Without the desire to fulfill the long-term goal (aka purpose) of being fit, looking good, getting healthy, … there will be nothing that keeps these folks returning to the gym.

If there is no purpose, motivation can be detrimental.

On the other side, what is purpose without motivation? The purpose is motivation enough! Haha, we are not kidding ourselves here. Without small wins, without some form of positive reinforcement or encouragement, the greatest purpose loses its appeal.

If there is no motivation, purpose can be not enough.

Have a purpose. Know why you are doing something.

Enjoy the way. Celebrate some goals, struggle after failures, and if a fist-bumping song helps rising the spirits, then turn the volume up.

Motivation and purpose are on a spectrum. They are neither good nor bad themselves, but what you make of them.

Thanks for reading!

Building my powerlifting platform

I always liked the look of the power- or weightlifting platforms with their finished surface, protective sides and cool logos. Especially homemade ones having an inspiring quote, motive or picture that represent the mindset and goals of the maker just ooze of personality and inspiration.

After recently moving to a place with enough place for a plattform I couldn’t resist and had to attempt one for myself… Well, maybe I searched only for places with enough place 🙂

Prior art

Commonly they are build with two layers of plywood as base, on top of which comes another plywood sheet in the middle and tractor or horse stall mats for the sides. For example like in this post: How to Build a Weightlifting Platform.

I did it differently. Having no garage to train in, my plattform stands in the kitchen — and I didn’t trust plywood and a moderately thin rubber mat to prevent cracking the floor in case I do something stupid.

The materials

– 50 x 50 x 4 cm³ rubber mats, 8 pieces for the surrounding

– 100 x 100 x 2 cm³ rubber mats, 2 pieces for the base

– 200 x 100 x 1,8 cm³ plywood(?)

– 3 litres epoxide resin and 0,75 litres solidifier

– an awesome poster


The assembly is pretty much a no-brainer, except for applying and sanding the resin. You can leave the plywood as is, or make it personal by spraying/painting a quote or picture on the plywood or glue a poster on it. Or even something more creative I cannot think of! I choose the poster route 🙂

(1. Optional: Cut parts off of the poster you don’t want.)

(2. Optional: Glue it to the plywood. Easy as that.)

3. Place 4 pieces of the small rubber mats to the left, 4 pieces to the right, and the two bigger mats in the middle.

4. Make a temporary wall for the resin around the plywood so that it resembles a very flat tub. Some type of tape should do it. It should be sealed tight, unless the resin flows / drops through it.

5. Mix the resin and solidifier according to the manual and fill the tub.

6. Spread the mixture evenly. Small bubbles will probably form; try to burst as many as possible.

7. Wait a week. Then remove the temporary walls around the wood.

8. Sand and grate the edges with different types of abrasive paper.

9. Place the finished board in the middle and add your equipment.

(10. Optional: Decorate the rest of the room.)


It is just awesome! I’m really in love with how it looks and performs. It’s radiating in light, but not too much, the natural pattern of the wood is great and the motive really shines and stands out.

There are some very small beauty mistakes like an edge of the poster was not glued and got lifted up, and some really small bubbles here and there. I don’t know if you can really prevent every single bubble, but double checking the correct adhesion of the poster should at least eliminate the first problem.

Looks are subjective, but performance not. The resin is very anti-sliding — there is no way i could move my feet without lifting them off the ground first. And the whole plattform is rock-solid and even. It feels pretty much like on an indoor basketball court or football field.

Idea behind the chosen picture

The picture got chosen not only because of the kick-ass Bowser illustration itself. If you don’t know, Bowser is the main villain in most Mario games. You have to literally rescue the princess and defeat the final boss Bowser. But it’s deceiving. There will always be a new game, where you have to defeat Bowser again. Or another game with another “final” boss. Or you just play the same game over and over ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

The conquering of a goal usually never means the end. There will be new goals, new bosses. In a way, the final task in achieving a goal isn’t even the real goal. The way to reach the goal is the real struggle, the real villain. Like in a game, like in training. Once you reached your final boss, you’re already grown so much that the fight isn’t even that important anymore.

That’s the idea, and what I never want to forget.


Many thanks to my friends Sebastian and Robin for their manpower in grating and final placement of the equipment! And to my brother Benjamin for the technical guidance and general help — you can find other interesting articles on his blog (in german), for example how he build the squat rack (parts 1, 2, and 3) seen in the pictures 🙂

Thanks for reading!