Mind Games: The Mental Side Of Marathons

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What are the mental aspects of marathon training?

Mind Games: The Mental Side Of Marathons

Running a marathon is an intense physical activity, no doubt about it. But successful marathoners recognize that there is a mental side, too. Knowing that you are well prepared for the marathon will boost your confidence. That preparation comes from training. During your training you have learned that you can complete long runs and run again the next day, you have learned what flavor of energy gel you like best, and you have learned that good quality socks are worth the money.

Also, and it sounds cliché, but a positive attitude is an asset during a marathon. If you find yourself slowing down or stopping to walk because it is 85 degrees, or you went out too fast, or you tried that weird gel at mile 15, tell yourself that your first goal is to finish, and you can almost always do that, unless you are truly ill or injured.

Most athletes, and runners are no exception, tend to be superstitious, and if you have your “lucky training socks” or your “racing bandana” that no one else knows about, it's normal. Just don't let superstition paralyze you and keep you from feeling good about the marathon if something goes awry. If the dog hid your “lucky socks” the day before the race, that's why you have more than one pair on hand, and if you can't find chocolate gel, strawberry will be lucky, too.



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Heidi Splete
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