Even the most dedicated and driven runners have days where they just don’t feel like lacing up their running shoes and hitting the road for a workout. When your motivation is lacking, it helps to turn to external sources for inspiration to fire you up to chase your dreams as a runner.
David Goggins’s quotes are undoubtedly sure to motivate any runner whose motivation is flagging. Goggins, a retired Navy SEAL, endurance athlete, and author of the inspiring book Can’t Hurt Me: Master Your Mind and Defy the Odds, embodies the “don’t give up” attitude that distance running requires.
An indomitable endurance athlete himself, David Goggins has completed 60 ultra-marathons, triathlons, and ultra-triathlons, placing among the top several finishers in most of his events.
Below, we share the top 50 David Goggins quotes for runners. These quotes will light your mind on fire with grit and determination and remind you to never make excuses, never sell yourself short, and never ever give up.
Print them out, post them where you can see them, and get after your goals with the top 50 David Goggins quotes below.
Top David Goggins Quotes from Can’t Hurt Me: Master Your Mind and Defy the Odds
- “Everything in life is a mind game! Whenever we get swept under by life’s dramas, large and small, we are forgetting that no matter how bad the pain gets, no matter how harrowing the torture, all bad things end.” ― David Goggins
- “Be more than motivated, be more than driven, become literally obsessed to the point where people think you’re fucking nuts.” ― David Goggins
- “Pain unlocks a secret doorway in the mind, one that leads to both peak performance, and beautiful silence.” ― David Goggins
- “I don’t stop when I’m tired. I stop when I’m done.” ― David Goggins
- “Our culture has become hooked on the quick-fix, the life hack, efficiency. Everyone is on the hunt for that simple action algorithm that nets maximum profit with the least amount of effort. There’s no denying this attitude may get you some of the trappings of success, if you’re lucky, but it will not lead to a calloused mind or self-mastery. If you want to master the mind and remove your governor, you’ll have to become addicted to hard work. Because passion and obsession, even talent, are only useful tools if you have the work ethic to back them up.” ― David Goggins
- “The reason it’s important to push hardest when you want to quit the most is because it helps you callous your mind. It’s the same reason why you have to do your best work when you are the least motivated.” ― David Goggins
- “It’s possible to transcend anything that doesn’t kill you,” ― David Goggins
- “When you think that you are done, you’re only 40% into what your body’s capable of doing. That’s just the limits that we put on ourselves.” ― David Goggins
- “Only you can master your mind, which is what it takes to live a bold life filled with accomplishments most people consider beyond their capability.” ― David Goggins
- “We all need small sparks, small accomplishments in our lives to fuel the big ones. Think of your small accomplishments as kindling. When you want a bonfire, you don’t start by lighting a big log. You collect some witch’s hair—a small pile of hay or some dry, dead grass. You light that, and then add small sticks and bigger sticks before you feed your tree stump into the blaze. Because it’s the small sparks, which start small fires, that eventually build enough heat to burn the whole fucking forest down.” ― David Goggins
- “You are giving up instead of getting hard! Tell the truth about the real reasons for your limitations and you will turn that negativity, which is real, into jet fuel. Those odds stacked against you will become a damn runway!” ― David Goggins
- “But it’s not the external voice that will break you down. It’s what you tell yourself that matters. The most important conversations you’ll ever have are the ones you’ll have with yourself. You wake up with them, you walk around with them, you go to bed with them, and eventually you act on them. Whether they be good or bad. We are all our own worst haters and doubters because self-doubt is a natural reaction to any bold attempt to change your life for the better. You can’t stop it from blooming in your brain, but you can neutralize it, and all the other external chatter by asking, ‘What if?’” ― David Goggins
- “But you don’t have to let your doubt into the cockpit! You can tolerate doubt as a backseat driver, but if you put doubt in the pilot’s seat, defeat is guaranteed. Remembering that you’ve been through difficulties before and have always survived to fight again shifts the conversation in your head. It will allow you to control and manage doubt, and keep you focused on taking each and every step necessary to achieve the task at hand.” ― David Goggins
- “The human body can withstand and accomplish a hell of a lot more than most of us think possible, and that it all begins and ends in the mind.” ― David Goggins
- “It hurts, but that’s all it does. The most difficult part of the training is training your mind. You build calluses on your feet to endure the road. You build callouses on your mind to endure the pain. There’s only one way to do that. You have to get out there and run.” ― David Goggins
- “It’s about what we do with opportunities revoked or presented to us that determine how a story ends.” ― David Goggins
- “The hard part is getting to that point, because the ticket to victory often comes down to bringing your very best when you feel your worst.” ― David Goggins
- “Everything in life is a mind game! Whenever we get swept under by life’s dramas, large and small, we are forgetting that no matter how bad the pain gets, no matter how harrowing the torture, all bad things end. That forgetting happens the second we give control over our emotions and actions to other people, which can easily happen when pain is peaking.” ― David Goggins
- “You can’t let a simple failure derail your mission, or let it worm so far up your ass it takes over your brain and sabotages your relationships with people who are close to you. Everyone fails sometimes and life isn’t supposed to be fair, much less bend to your every whim.” ― David Goggins
- “Then I thought of an English middle-distance runner from back in the day named Roger Bannister. When Bannister was trying to break the four-minute mile in the 1950s, experts told him it couldn’t be done, but that didn’t stop him. He failed again and again, but he persevered, and when he ran his historic mile in 3:59.4 on May 6, 1954, he didn’t just break a record, he broke open the floodgates simply by proving it possible. Six weeks later, his record was eclipsed, and by now over 1,000 runners have done what was once thought to be beyond human capability.” ― David Goggins
- “We habitually settle for less than our best; at work, in school, in our relationships, and on the playing field or race course.” ― David Goggins
- “Control your mindset. Dominate your thought process. This life is all a fucking mind game. Realize that. Own it!” ― David Goggins
- “It’s funny, humans tend to hatch our most challenging goals and dreams, the ones that demand our greatest effort yet promise absolutely nothing, when we are tucked into our comfort zones.” ― David Goggins
- “Physical training is the perfect crucible to learn how to manage your thought process because when you’re working out, your focus is more likely to be single pointed, and your response to stress and pain is immediate and measurable. Do you hammer hard and snag that personal best like you said you would, or do you crumble? That decision rarely comes down to physical ability, it’s almost always a test of how well you are managing your own mind. If you push yourself through each split and use that energy to maintain a strong pace, you have a great chance of recording a faster time. Granted, some days it’s easier to do that than others. And the clock, or the score, doesn’t matter anyway.” ― David Goggins
25 More Motivating and Inspiring David Goggins Quotes for Runners
- “Victory comes from getting the best of you when you feel the worst.” – David Goggins
- “A warrior is a guy that goes ‘I’m here again today. I’ll be here again tomorrow and the next day.’ It’s a person who puts no limit on what’s possible.” – David Goggins
- “Every morning in our lives, we have a choice to make. You have the choice to stay in bed and say, ‘Forget it, I’m not going to work out today.’ or ‘Forget it, I’m not going to work hard today.’ That’s your choice that you make every single day of your life. Make the right decision.” – David Goggins
- “When you fall down, focus on the solution, not the problem. You might quit or fail 100 times. Keep that clear picture of where you want to be.” – David Goggins
- “Don’t limit expectations of yourself and settle for anything less than what you are truly capable of achieving.” – David Goggins
- “I’m a big believer of doing something that sucks every single day of your life. I believe it’s a key component into strengthening your mind.” – David Goggins
- “A lot of us surround ourselves with people who speak to our desire for comfort. Who would rather treat the pain of our wounds and prevent further injury than help us callous over them and try again. We need to surround ourselves with people who will tell us what we need to hear, not what we want to hear, but at the same time not make us feel we’re up against the impossible.” David Goggins
- “Success is based off of your willingness to work your ass off no matter what obstacles are in your way.” – David Goggins
- “Don’t worry about the elements around you and what’s going on. You gotta get out there and get it.” David Goggins
- “Motivation is crap. Motivation comes and goes. When you’re driven, whatever is in front of you will get destroyed.” – David Goggins
- “I understand the temptation to sell short, but I also know that impulse is driven by your mind’s desire for comfort, and it’s not telling you the truth.” David Goggins
- “In life, there is no gift as overlooked or inevitable as failure. I’ve had quite a few and have learned to relish them, because if you do the forensics you’ll find clues about where to make adjustments and how to eventually accomplish your task.” David Goggins
- “Most wars are won or lost in our own heads, and when we’re in a foxhole we usually aren’t alone, and we need to be confident in the quality of the heart, mind, and dialogue of the person hunkered down with us. Because at some point we will need some empowering words to keep us focused and deadly.” David Goggins
- “Everybody wants a quick fix like 6-minute abs – you may get some results from it, but those results won’t be permanent. The permanent results come from you having to suffer. You have to make that a tattoo on your brain so that when the hard time comes again, you don’t forget it.” David Goggins
- “We are all great. No matter if you think you’re dumb, fat, been bullied, we all have greatness. You gotta find the courage. It’s going to be hard work, discipline, and the non-cognitive skills like hard work, dedication, and sacrifice, will set you apart.” – David Goggins
- “Even if you are hurting, never let your competition see the look of defeat or even vulnerability on your face.” – David Goggins
- “You’re gonna fail, you’re gonna be in your head, and you’re gonna be saying I’m not good enough. It’s about how you overcome that.” – David Goggins
- “We all like to take this four lane highway, but we always step over the shovel. All I did was pick up that shovel and made my own path.” – David Goggins
- “When you’re exhausted, weak, and tired and everyone around you looks just as bad as you or even worse – that’s the perfect time for you to make a statement. You let everyone around you know that when their life ends, that’s when yours begins.” David Goggins
- “And if you fail again, so the f*ck be it. Take the pain. Repeat these steps and keep fighting.” — David Goggins
- “Life is one big tug of war between mediocrity and trying to find your best self.” David Goggins
- “High achievement doesn’t require inborn talent. It requires working your ass off. Period.” – David Goggins
- “Get over whatever is stopping you from being your best self! Rather than use the obstacles and setbacks in your life as excuses, use them as the catalyst to get better and go further in life.” – David Goggins
- “Comfort zones: If you live in one too long…that becomes your norm. Get comfortable being uncomfortable.” – David Goggins
- “You can push yourself to a place that is beyond the current capability or temporal mindset of the people you work with, and that’s okay. Just know that your supposed superiority is a figment of your own ego. So don’t lord it over them, because it won’t help you advance as a team or as an individual in your field. Instead of getting angry that your colleagues can’t keep up, help pick your colleagues up and bring them with you!” — David Goggins
If these David Goggins quotes don’t inspire you to get out there and give it your best, I don’t know what will!
Check out some of our other motivational articles to give you a boost:
Ultramarathon Motivation: 10 Tips For Staying Motivated In Training
1 thought on “50 David Goggins Quotes for Runners To Get Motivated”
Love these! Even if you think he can be a bit much, the words he says are the truth. You and only you are responsible for your success. Theirs another quote from Goggins, from when he was doing the pull up challenge that stuck with me. I started using while I was training for the death race and that I use all the time now.
“The pain you are willing to endure reflexes how badly you want it”
It’s simple and to the point.