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Why Gatorade Commercials Piss Me Off Before They Pump Me Up


First, more Gatorade is actually consumed by hungover twenty-somethings reaching over onto the nightstand in the morning as they gently pour Glacier Freeze into their parched mouths, while barely containing the energy or willpower to sit up all the way to ensure none spills down their face or onto the bed sheet. Don’t lie – you’ve been there plenty of times.

Second, their commercials are pretty special at illuminating training sessions or high stake games as gritty, intensely-focused moments in time that defines the quarterback, boxer, or tennis player. Pump up music blasts in the background as the final shot goes in, the crowd goes wild, and the Gatorade flows from every bottle sealing a great win, a great knockout, or great ace.

Thing is, there is no music in the background of life. Not every moment has a crowd on 30,000 screaming fans. And not every moment is under the lights on Friday. In fact, they’re done in a setting of the ordinary – the painful realization that life is not a Gatorade commercial.

So why do Gatorade commercials actually piss me off before the pump me up?

Because while the lessons taught in athletics transcend the lines of the sports field, so does the atmosphere in which success is achieved. Painstakingly true in sports is the preparation that goes into each and every successful game – the mundane practice routine, the boring film study, and the endless gameplans.

Don’t see any game winning shots. No big hits here. No down-the-line winners in sight. Just pure, unapologetic training that doesn’t end with a squirt of Gatorade. It ends with sore muscles, sweat to wipe up, and a renewed sense of just exactly how far we are away from actually hitting that game-winning shot in life.

No amount of electrolytes will seal the deal for you in sports. No amount of pump up music will give you the best workout or the flashiest gear the best shot at winning.

It’s the impossible-to-calculate, no way to quantify, unsexy and ordinary tasks that mean next to nothing in moment that is what build up towards what we hope is on the other side – the game-winning shot.

So while Gatorade makes us believe that all moments are sexy, either on the field, in the weight room, or on the practice court – Remember: Greatness is achieved in the boring far before it’s achieved in the exciting.

Gatorade lives in the exciting. Right now, I live in the boring. But, one day, I’ll be in the exciting. With the lights, the music, and the screaming crowd. And that pumps me up.

Where do you live?

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About the author, Tim

US Navy Surface Warfare Officer.
Lacrosse Player.

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