Find Your Reason
Do you sometimes have trouble sticking to your training scheduled? Or getting up for an early run? Or running through bad weather? Remember why it is that you are running in the first place. Having a defined reason behind something gives it purpose. Whether it is the goal of making it to the Boston Marathon, that you would like to lose a few pounds, or that you want to improve your health, having a goal set, and reminding yourself of it will help strengthen your mental resolve.
Change Your Inner Dialog
By changing your inner dialog, and the way that you talk to yourself, you can improve your mental strength and motivation. If every day you tell yourself that you will not be able to reach your goal, that it is too hard, than you are not going to have as much of a drive to work hard. That negativity will not only reduce your chances of reaching that goal, but will also lower your enthusiasm and my eventually lead you to giving up entirely. Be positive, and kind to yourself.
Visualization is an important technique used by many athletes. Whether you are preparing for a morning run or a big marathon this is a way that you can get your mind into the right place and prepare yourself for the road ahead. Using mental imagery to see yourself accomplishing your goals can add to your confidence and help you be ready ahead of time.
Run in Difficult Conditions
Running has all kinds of opportunities for difficult conditions that can help to build your mental strength. There are not many things that take mental fortitude like running in poor weather. This isn’t something you are looking for all of the time, but stepping out of your comfort zone is a great way to grow. Occasionally choosing a different time of day, or a more difficult running route are other ways that you can push the boundries of your comfort zone and train your mind as well as your body.
Focus on Being Present
Staying in the moment can be difficult but rewarding. This is a great way to train your mind and to improve both your efficiency at running and your enjoyment of the sport. By focusing on the present you are putting all of your energy into what you are doing now. Don’t worry about judging your performance till then end or your run, don’t worry about other things until you are finished, this is your time enjoy it and focus on the now.