I have always been a sucker for all things motivational, specifically in the sports realm. I’m not exactly sure what it is, but all of those, “Dig deep,” “Find the strength within,” etc type ads really get me right in the feelings. I am forever amazed by the feats that the human body can accomplish and no matter how many times I’ve seen or heard something, it will never cease to give me goose bumps.
This obsession probably dates back further, but the first time I remember feeling so overwhelmed and inspired by an athletic story was when I was ten. My best friend and I had a true fan-girl thing going for Lance Armstrong. In fact, I decided, in order to be true to my obsession, I must read his very grownup biography. I believe I made it through the first ten pages before realizing that I wasn’t old enough to read the details of the effects of Lance’s 18 golf ball sized tumors, but that figure, and his story, have always stuck with me. No matter the recent discovery of his doping, his story is still one of incredible human triumph, and that, will always inspire me.
If you show me a black and white ad of someone hunched over with sweat dripping in slow motion off of their face, doesn’t matter what the ad is for, I will be brimming with can-do energy. The shit just really gets me going.
So without further ado here are the two most inspirational sports ads I’ve ever seen. Before every track meet in high school I used to watch these to remind myself of the incredible potential of the human body and the unbelievable feeling of triumph. Even now, when I’m down, or about to go for a really hard workout, I watch them.
I have no idea where this first video came from. It says it’s a Nike ad, but it isn’t, although a lot of the footage is taken from other Nike ads. The monologue that goes with it is without a doubt the most inspirational, goose bump inducing piece of literature ever written, and nearly every time I watch it, I feel so amped up that I consider printing out the words and pasting them on my bedroom wall. Right after I first discovered this video (by doing a YouTube search of inspirational sports ads, yes I’ve already admitted I have an obsession) it disappeared, I think because of copy right infringement or something, but much to my relief it has returned to get me all inspired-up whenever the need be.
This second video, which supplies much of the footage for the above video, is from the ’08 Olympics. Nothing gets me going quite like the Olympics. It’s hard to even describe how I feel about them except that it’s like watching 16 days of nonstop inspirational ads and the entire time I feel like crying at how impressive it all is and running a million marathons because everything we need is already inside and our potential is infinite.