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Psychology of racing

How often do we talk about the physical side of racing, the technique, the training, etc etc…..but it seems to me that the psychology of racing is JUST AS IMPORTANT.

If you don’t know how to push yourself (in the head) then you will not perform at your very best.
Lets here you thoughts please.

I know i have a battle with my head every time i hit a hill, a muscle burn, a weak thought……
my guess is you do too….

mental fitness, what does it mean?


  • huwdhuwd Posts: 228
    Im a firm believer in mind over matter and when it starts to hurt I use small targets to keep me going on long distance - for example setting time targets for points that I pass but more than anything i find myself zoning out and just thinking about nothing. hard to explain but I think my brain must just kind of switch off - if anyone tried to get any sense out of me then I think they might struggle!
  • agent_tiagent_ti Posts: 306
    Just keep going no matter what, and don't let anything get in your way.

    Believe in yourself, as soon as you stop believing you can do it, you won't be able to.
  • SilverbackSilverback Posts: 131
    Just bought a copy of Ahead of the Game by Jeremy Lazarus (ecademy press), which uses Neuro Linguistic Programming (NLP). Cover blurb looks positive and not too technical for those of us who can be hard of thinking.

  • md6md6 Posts: 969
    I think that you're right it is as much mental as physical, when you look at it almost anyone of reasonable fitness could complete a tri and with training they could do well, but the mental side is what gets people. When they start to feel down or like it is hard most people want to give up - i know I do, but much more than that, I will not give up. I will force myself forward and keep going until I physically can't anymore. I think we all have our coping methods, i tend to mentally start recounting other days when it was easy and when i have gone further/faster or both to help, when (if) that isn't enough then i start to think about the next target, a wall, a bin a treee whatever, and i will get there, and when i'm there its only a little further to the next. If that fails well...then i start to berate myself for being so f'ing useless and that keeps me going.
  • BopomofoBopomofo Posts: 980
    I agree. The mental game is just as important as the physical part. I once tried to teach someone to swim who would do half a length then stop and say "I can't do it". Completely defeated me. Fitness and mobility both Ok, technically no major issues, but head was all wrong. Fail. I'm not a coach... so I referred her to one.

    I split things up into achievable chunks, the most important being the half-way mark. If I can do that, then I can do it again. This kept me going during my total blow-up at about the 12k marker in the run at Weymouth this year. I staggered, cramped, hobbled and probably blubbed... but I was half-way there so I knew I could it. Every lamp post, every turn becomes a Target.
    Sometimes I just try to imagine myself as some uber-athlete heading for gold. It picks me up.
  • JonhinioJonhinio Posts: 289
    Running the London Marathon last year, I counted down the miles rather than up so 25 to go, 24 to go.. etc. Found that got me round a lot easier.

    I also know now that the body is a lot more durable than the mind allows it to think it is. Seeing what some people put their bodies through in these endurance events proves that. Just have to get the training right.....
  • durhamvamdurhamvam Posts: 246
    I suppose from a biological survival point of view it makes perfect sense to have your brain kick in and say whoa there before your body is completely flattened by a non-life threatening situation, that way you still have some reserves left just in case you happen to run into that sabre tooth tiger on the way home!

    So overcoming that programmed block to running yourself to complete exhaustion must be an important part it getting the absolute most of yourself.
  • sportevesporteve Posts: 141
    there is a very interesting article in triathlete europe this month about david goggins, never heard of the man before but wow, what a determination...
    for any of you that havent heard of him check his site out:
    there are some interesting things he says in this blog re: how our mind works...
    i found him inspirational
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