Your legs are on fire. You can’t run any faster… Or so you think. When you feel as if you can’t run another step, it’s natural to assume your body has had enough. But your minds you possess more power than you realize.
ALTER YOUR THINKING
First things first: Always put in proper training to perform your best. Whether you’re putting in a long or short run, you can work to break down the hurdles in your mind to reveal what your body is capable of.
Measure your discomfort. If you are pushing the pace to get faster or adding distance to go farther, your body is going to talk back to you. Be a good listener. During training, learn to distinguish “good pain” (discomfort from leaving your comfort zone) from “bad pain” (something that verges on injury). Body awareness is a. You also need to experience some discomfort so when it occurs in a race, it’s not a foreign feeling. You know you can push through it!
Picture a strong finish. Envisioning the runner you want to be—one who doesn’t let up or give in—is one of the most important mental skills you can harness if you want to push your limits. Envision yourself running strong, gliding up hills, and sprinting across the finish line. Boost your self-confidence and use it to power you!
Celebrate small victories. Break down a race into chunks, each with individual goals. You could aim to maintain good running posture when climbing a hill, or to pass the runner that you’ve been trailing behind for a few miles. Each time you check one off, you feel better about your capability to achieve your ultimate race goal.
Repeat a mantra. Having a go-to phrase that you can repeat can help you push through challenging parts of training and races. Create a mindset that avoids failure. Say things like Push it or Let’s move.
With practice you can learn to defy the brain’s overprotective nature so you can challenge yourself and achieve your goals!