The Athlete Mind


We are inherently motivated to better ourselves and move towards our full potential. However, this does not mean we always are motivated or reach the goals we set for ourselves.

Cortnee WHite

I have been fascinated with human behavior for a long time. Especially in the world of health and fitness. The work I do is helping people and athletes change. Change the unhelpful thoughts, routines, and behaviors. To help move and support them to become their best and healthiest versions.

The idea of change is simple right, stop eating ice cream, just go to the gym, just leave that toxic lover, or go get some help. Unfortunately, it is not that simple. Change is uncomfortable, even change that will better our health or make us more successful is a daunting task.

Working hard to make changes in business.


Abraham Maslow, an American psychologist left an interesting theory that we fear our best just as much as our worst. He coined the “The Jonah Complex” describing our tendency to evade our own capacities. He observed that for us to have standards and a mission in life is a really scary expectation. As it implies that we must put aside all our excuses for not living up to our potential. As a result, we don’t answer the call to greatness and instead practice what Maslow called mock humility.

He highlights that when we set low targets for ourselves and do only as much as necessary to be satisfactory, that we might be setting ourselves up for unhappiness.

Now, this is just a theory but what I can relate to is that sometimes it’s not about what we will gain from change but what we will lose. Of course if we set aside all of our excuses to be fit, to quit bad habits, to live our best life…heck yeah I’m all for it. But, food is comforting, smoking has become a coping skill, changing teams or work means I’ll lose connections, if I leave a bad partner i’ll lose all the time I spent on them and be alone.

What comes after change is great and rewarding but the process of change is where we stumble. I have found confronting the behavior that needs to be changed is more about what that behavior has provided you and what losing it uncovers.

I love finding balance, being content and eating my ice cream but sometimes we need to ask ourselves if we are practicing mock humility in order to not feel the discomfort of change?

Some food for thought…

Bodybuilding: Strong in Body and Mind.

Sometimes we have to un-rack the weight e carry to become stronger.

Cortnee White, LPC-Associate

The fitness world is full of health, hard work, beautiful people and rock hard bodies. There’s a type of rush being in that environment, especially when you are willing to show it all off on a stage under the bright lights. Bodybuilding is an extreme sport that takes a whole other level of commitment, discipline, and strength. I am not talking about muscle strength.

I think bodybuilders have some of the strongest minds out there. Probably because I spent most of my life in fitness. My mom owned a few gyms growing up, we even lived in one for awhile. She trained, I trained, it was in my blood to work out. I eventually found my way into competing. What a rush to train so hard, walk on the stage under the lights and be judged. It was addicting and I got my first taste of the mental strength it took to do the sport.

Bodybuilding (bikini division)
My First show competing in Bikini.

I did it for a couple years and eventually the rush faded for me and maintaining that lifestyle was no longer fun. I still trained a little but you never forget the feeling, the way you looked and the way people were amazed by the way you looked. Stepping away from that lifestyle forces you to rework the way you train, the way you look at your body and your relationship with food.

Mental Muscle

Now that I work in sport psychology and therapy I train bodybuilders in a whole other way. I train their mental muscle, our mind needs a training plan too. No doubt bodybuilders can wake up, hit the gym, count their macros, and constantly push themselves to the limit. But, sometimes they hit a wall or sometimes the wall hits them when the stage lights go out. The sport is about perfection, the perfect symmetry, don’t be too muscular or too soft. Most of the time that perfection is only in the eyes of the judges or the politics behind the show. Food can become the enemy, the person in the mirror is under constant scrutiny, and outside life and pleasures are put on the back burner. This can take a complete toll on the mind and the body.

There are great and amazing things you gain out of bodybuilding other than a rock hard bod but if your running the perfection race you will never be satisfied. I work with athletes on managing expectations, stress, and self-image, we work on the relationship with food and the gym. I want bodybuilders to thrive in their sport under the lights but more so when they step off the stage. That’s where the real mental strength lies.

“Sometimes we have to un-rack the weight we carry to become stronger”


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