Chris Bumstead, the three-time Classic Physique Mr. Olympia, goes for number four next month. He recently posted a champion mentality video with an inspirational monologue about focusing on the journey and not the destination. Bumstead is always good for a motivational quote, whether on bodybuilding’s biggest stage after winning a Classic Olympia title or in the gym alone, endeavoring to be better today than yesterday.

These are Chris Bumstead’s best motivational quotes.


Chris Bumstead quotes
Chris Bumstead, winning.

‘What I found is that winning doesn’t happen on show day. It happens in early mornings, painful workouts, long cardio sessions, and hungry nights. It happens in those moments of fear we all have when faced with a difficult goal and then more so what you make of that fear. It happens in every second of every day before you win. If you can take every opportunity that you have to bring yourself closer to your goal, win every one of those opportunities, all while becoming more resilient in the process, how can you lose? That is an exciting opportunity, an exciting responsibility to find out what you’re truly capable of.”


“If when you look in the mirror you don’t see the perfect version of yourself, you better see the hardest working version of yourself.”


“If you’re not improving, you’re falling behind.”


Chris Bumstead quotes
Is the workout hell or is it really paradise?

“Entering hell blindly with no promise of what’s on the other end is one thing, but getting to paradise and then choosing to turn back around into hell full well knowing what to expect this time with the pipe dream of a better paradise on the other end waiting for you, that’s insanity. But history has a habit of calling ambitious people crazy. There’s no guarantee of what you’ll find on the other side of hell. You may even be crazy enough to learn that it was never hell to begin with. Maybe, just maybe, you can open your mind to the possibility that paradise is found in how you choose to look and act in this world. Paradise, like our goals, may not really be a destination but an endless horizon we secretly don’t want to reach, a never-ending reason to keep working and growing with the intention not to accomplish goals but to become someone who can accomplish any goal.”


“Winning has no finish line. It’s about the responsibility to ourselves to take control of what little things you can in this world regardless of circumstance, to train your mind to switch your perspective and focus on being the absolute best you can be in the areas you do have control over.”


Chris Bumstead quotes
Every high-protein meal brings Bumstead closer to his goals.

“Everyone out there whose dreams are scaring you, whose dreams make you want to quit, just don’t quit. That’s good. Your dreams should be big, they should be scary. Just keep pushing through. It’s not about winning. It’s not about a trophy. It’s about having no quit. It’s about giving everything you have so that when you show up on game day, before the results are over, you’re proud of yourself and you know the work you put in.”


“Having a champion mentality isn’t about the trophies, medals, or success. It’s about having no quit. It’s not letting anyone hear you complain, standing up for all you believe in, living your truth, and setting the standard at which you operate at for everything in your life. It’s about willingly choosing to do every single thing within your power to achieve your end result.”


“At the end of it all you may just find that the trophies and money were never the prize you wanted, but, rather, the journey and the mentality you built along the way was everything you ever needed.”

Chris Bumstead quotes
Chris Bumstead slides on another plate for his next set, another step in the endless journey.

All photos: Cbum/Instagram

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