10 Top Motivational Ads from Nike

13 March 2009 · 5 comments

I don’t like advertising. Marketing is more powerful than the average person suspects. Marketers are armed with million-dollar budgets and decades of research. We defend ourselves only with our experience. It’s not a fair fight. I wince every time I hear somebody brag that ads don’t affect them; it’s my guess that ads affect these people most of all.

Still, I can’t help but love certain ads. For example, there’s an entire series of Nike commercials that make me want to get off my ass and do something. In a lot of ways, I don’t care if these make me buy more Nike products. They make me motivated to improve myself. In fact, I have an entire playlist at YouTube composed entirely of Nike commercials. When I’m feeling sorry for myself, when I’m feeling lazy, when I’m feeling uninspired, I watch these. When I’m done, I’m ready to go do stuff.

Here are my ten favorite motivational Nike commercials. I suspect that if you watch even a few of them, you’ll have a more productive day.


Awake (how to start your day)


Move (one of my faves)


Training (motivation to keep going)


Courage (dare to pursue your dreams)


No excuses (there’s no reason not to try)


Leave nothing (good if you like American football)


Take it to the next level (good if you like real football)


Failure (Michael Jordan explains success)


A little less hurt (wow — just wow)

After watching these commercials, I’m ready to take on the world. (And the funny thing is: I don’t own a pair of Nike shoes. I have a couple of Nike shirts for running, but that’s about it!)

1 Nick March 16, 2009 at 10:16

Is this your long post like in the olden days? I feel cheated. And also like I should do something. Guess I will go lay down until that feeling goes away.

2 J.D. March 16, 2009 at 10:18

This is not my long post like in the olden days. That post is about almost drowning. This is a post that I had scheduled to put up at Get Rich Slowly, but then thought better of it.

3 Joel March 17, 2009 at 10:39

I love that “Leave Nothing” commercial- “Football Vallhalla” is how I think of it, an eternal game played for playing’s sake. Almost makes me want to exercise. Or maybe just watch “The Last of the Mohicans” for a seventh time.

4 Chill Out March 31, 2009 at 14:09

Great videos indeed!!

i feel i have to go running now:-))

5 Matt February 14, 2010 at 11:57

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