Mental Training: Tuesdays on the Run

Tuesdays on the Run Link Up- every Tuesday we have a new running related topic. Join your favorite running bloggers in linking up each week.

Hey hey hey! It’s time for Tuesdays on the Run. This week we hope you link up posts related to breaking through the mental barrier.

We want to hear from you! Link up at the bottom of this post and let us know how you smash those mental training walls.

Don’t forget to link up with Erika, Marcia and me this week.

May topics:

  • 5/2: Race Cheats
  • 5/9: Mother’s Day
  • 5/16: Mental Training Tips and Tricks
  • 5/23: Free Topic Tuesday
  • 5/30: Grade your month

Mental Training

It’s well documented that this is my weakness.  Mentally pushing through or past or through obstacles that I throw in front of myself is a major challenge for this runner.

Usually, the issues are of my own making.  It’s not that I’m hurting or that there’s something wrong, just that I shut down when things get tough.  I don’t like tough.  I don’t DO tough.

I’m not tough.

Tough defined:  capable of great endurance; sturdy; hardy. 

It’s a problem when you are an ENDURANCE athlete, no?

Galloway book

I believe all hope is not lost, however!  After talking to Jeff Galloway at the Disneyland Expo and, yes, impulsively purchasing his book on mental training, I believe it’s a skill we can all acquire.

And frankly, at 43, it’s time I hone this skill.

The good news is that I deal well with stress.  Most of the time anyway.

If I’m overtired then all bets are off and I’m a mess. I lose my ever loving mind if things do not go as I planned.

Moms, back me up here. Getting enough rest for our kiddos is important and so is getting enough rest for the mamas.

But on a day to day basis, throw things at me and I’ll handle it.

Like. A. Boss.

For example: the number of miles in a run don’t freak me out.

Hilary 1

The pace I should run them at… that freaks me out.  This is something I need to work on 2 fronts:

1. Don’t care about it. Fast, slow, just GO.

or

2.  Get faster. If I can’t get past #1 then obviously my other choice is to get faster.  Since I used to have a little speed in my past as a runner (comparatively speaking here!) I know I can get that back.

I’ve also read that the greatest endurance athletes in the world find some sort of “zen” or meditation state when the going gets rough.

the-zone

I’d love that. To be able to block out the crud and go to a happy place all while my body finishes the miles?

YES! Sign me up. (Note to self- find more information on THIS).

And then my biggest weakness:  WILLPOWER.

I don’t have any.

willpower

I just printed this out and slapped it on my fridge (ahem) and on the file cabinet in my office.

Reminders, y’all.

How do you work your willpower muscle?  Do you meditate while you run?

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About Patty

Patty Holliday is a wife and mother of four. She's a travel agent specializing in Disney & Universal vacations- and loves a candid confession. Find her in Virginia (or anywhere frequent flyer miles or her trusty minivan takes her.)

Comments

  1. I love your brutal honesty! Lol! I am with you on the pacefreaking me out. I have only recently started running, I am not a natural athlete, have never been, but for some reason the pressure I put on myself… one would think I am aiming for the Olympics!!! So your mantra “Don’t care about it. Fast, slow, just GO” is brilliant. Definitely going to be drilling that into my head!

  2. Ive had to work alot on my mental strength for racing . Thats a great reminder about willpower!

  3. For me running is at least 50% mental. Just getting myself out onto the treadmill or on the road or halfway through a long run, I need to talk to myself. But I have never meditated while running. It might be something to consider especially during longer runs by myself.

  4. I never have a plan on how far I want to run. That way if I go further than what I expect to do I call it a win in my book and I do not get disappointed. I do not normally think about pace. I find if you are building the mileage you are building your endurance and faster pace will come.

  5. If I’m in a meditative state when I’m running, then I’m having a good run. So often I’m suffering! I’m starting to get back to some of those meditative runs and I’m happy about that.

  6. Our minds can interfere with the best physical training. Why does that happen? Now I understand why elites see sports psychologists.

  7. I really love this topic today because I really have to work on my mental strength. Sometimes I’m weak and give up. When that happens I make sure the next run is very “zen”… no watch, no mileage to reach, no pace. Just run and go. It helps refocus me.

  8. My favorite part about running is being in a meditative state. And this is what I’ve discovered during trail running. I focus on breath and really take in my surroundings. It’s such a peaceful and relaxing experience.

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