Running an endurance event involves some discomfort. Sure you may start out strong and feeling good but suddenly something shifts and the distance between mile 8 and mile 8 1/2 seems twice that and you struggle. And then you can’t figure out why you’re struggling and you can start to unravel.
This is when you need to realize it’s all in your head. And that can mess up your race. Here are some tips to help you overcome the mental struggle.
When the negative thoughts come into your head it’s ok to acknowledge it. “Yes. This is hard.” And then the KEY is to let that feeling flow away. Don’t sit on that thought.
So you acknowledge the challenge and now you need to start the Power Talk. I am well trained. I can handle the distance. I’m strong. I’ve got this. Yes, Power Talk is like your mantra. Repeat it as much as you need to. Every step if needed.
Next, you need to break the race down.
During the Ragnar Relay race I completed this weekend, my 1:30 am leg was 8.3 miles. It was dark. I had made a wrong turn early on and when I got back on the course I realized that I was pretty much alone on this country road and would be for the next 8 miles.
I wasn’t concerned with the distance but add in fatigue, the fact that it was the middle of the night and I was alone in the dark, I admit I was a little freaked out. So I needed to snap to and get my head back so I simply started to tick off each mile. One mile (beep beep went my Garmin) then another mile. Then another. I forgot about the distance I had to cover and focused on 1 mile at a time. Soon I was at 4 miles, then 5 miles and finally I saw the final mile marker and headed strong to the end.
I’ve used this trick in marathons and other races that I’ve run. For a marathon it’s 6 mile increments, for a half marathon it’s 4 miles. You have to find your sweet spot and let this little mental trick help.
And if nothing is working, just start counting each step on a 1, 2, 1, 2, 1, 2 count You break the negative talk cycle by counting. Soon you will be back on track.
So if you are facing a roadblock on your runs, remember to acknowledge it, use some power talk and then break it down. You’ve got this!
Alrighty, today’s workout is below. Remember, there’s only a few days’ to go!!
Workout #27- 10/27/15
- Hip Lifts – 50 repetitions
- Squats – 50 repetitions
- Alternating Rear Lunges – 50 repetitions (a left and a right is a 1 count)
- Please print up the October Challenge Workout Description for a complete description of how to do the exercises.
- Perform the workout 1 or 2 times if you are feeling strong today. Go at YOUR own pace.
Now go run!