Pomerene Hospital Blog
9 Tips to Reaching Your Racing Goals
Amber signed up for the race of her life; a half-marathon that required deep conviction to conquer the hilly course. She had trained with tenacity, and prepared for the day knowing she would be carrying her body 13 plus miles.
Early on race morning, she stepped from her car with tears in her eyes. Emotions grasped her insecurities presenting the question of, "Am I Worthy of Being Here?" The anxiety was almost too much as she observed lean athletes jogging the parking lot to warm up for the race.
She was so fearful of the task ahead, that she wanted to fall down and fake an injury to excuse her from the race. Doing that would be like eating rice crispy squares when no one was watching; somehow cheating on herself.
Amber knew she must fully commit. It was not a frivolous decision of simply half-showing up on race day. She had to journey deep within herself, and drum up her courage. It was a requirement.
Whether you are simply in the journey to a more fit body, or contemplating signing up for a racing event beyond your current comfort zone, there are 9 key strategies that can help you get out of your negative head, into your internal stride and reach your running goals.1. Change Your Inner Voice
Build yourself up with continual positive affirmations by choosing praise over negating inner language. If doubt creeps in, discard it immediately. Believe in yourself at all costs.
2. Commit to Training
Sign up for a race as the intended dangling carrot. Going our for a casual walk or easy run as part of your weight loss regimen can be fleeting. Whereas training for race day will help you to commit on a deeper level.
3. Find the Parallels
Think about your run or walk training as a metaphor for your life. The goals you have already conquered finishing school or reaching for the next level in your profession are similar to winning your fit body.
Challenging hills can represent the obstacles you have overcome. Don't run or walk a different route to avoid them, shift your mindset that you can conquer anything that comes your way. Finishing a hard run or walk, even though it rocked you to the core, is a good thing for your spirit.
4. Prove Yourself Right
Create a strategy for your runs or walks. If just starting out, challenge yourself to run or walk to the next tree or electrical pole. Each time your run or walk that same route, go further. Set a specific landmark as your goal, and prove to yourself that you can make it. As you advance, have courage to push beyond your self-imposed limitations.
5. Remind Yourself Why
Write down your favorite affirmation or word on your body. If you are choosing to lose weight in order to be a better example to your child, write their name down where you can see it if you run or walk. Think up a great phrase that inspires you and write it across your knuckles. Here are some great ideas to get you started:
- Because I can
- Doing it for (insert name)
- It makes me a better mom/dad
- I deserve to be happy
- Every step gets me close to my goal
Don't expect to run like Wonder Woman or walk like a supermodel from the get-go. As in every new venture, there is a learning curve. Know from the start, wherever you are is further than the day before. You will be surprised how quickly you progress over a three-month period. Log your runs or walk; record your distance, time and how you felt about the run or walk. Review often to measure your progress.
7. Prepare Your Body
If your training is less than one hour there is no need to carb load or fuel for the run. To burn fat, eat plenty of slow-burning carbs (vegetables) and always accompany with a good, lean protein. Eat your carb meals (whole grains, fruits) only after you exercise to reload your glycogen stores.
8. Run on Clouds
Use your mind to be light on your feet. Think about your feet hitting the ground as if they are softly running on cushioning clouds. With purpose, run lightly, and focus on striking with your mid-foot rather than your heel.
9. Find a Community
Gather up your friends or join a running or walking group. You will progress more quickly with people that challenge you to step-it-up. Be vocal about your new goal to create a built-in support system around you. You are less likely to let yourself down when you know others are counting on your to follow through.
If you have a specific fitness goal or need a new level of challenge to your exercise program, join us for the 20th Annual Fall Trail Run in beautiful Holmes County, Ohio on Saturday, September 1, 2018. Race day options include a half marathon, 10K, 5K and a 2-mile fun walk. Register here! Let the goal-setting begin!
Blog Written by: Lyndee Zeigler, Exercise Specialist at Pomerene Kinetics