Due my workload I almost skipped my lunch run today, but I like to keep it as the one sacred constant in my day, so I headed out for the trail. But it was tough, I had low energy and that sapped my enthusiasm.
My thoughts turned to a couple of friends I lost earlier this year, each had a passion for life and a great sense of humor. I had no doubt they would relish being in my shoes, no matter how bad I thought my day was. As someone once said, every day above ground is a good day.
My mood changed, the tiredness was not gone but it was forgotten, pushed aside and impotent. I chose to ignore it. I picked a work problem to solve, took a few deep breaths, soaked in the sunlight and dancing shadows, then ran on with the purpose of clarifying my problem and coming up with a solution.
I had a good run. I didn’t definitively solve my problem, but I do have some promising options to try.
As I’ve said before, mindset is everything, almost. There’s the matter part too, but…
Mindset makes or takes… your energy, your motivation, your purpose.
In bike racing it’s commonly said that training is 90% physical, 10% mental; but racing is 90% mental.
The strongest rider often doesn’t win, because some other guy or gal wanted it more, and was prepared to dig deeper, and deeper… until everyone else cracked.
With that preamble (I promise to be brief tomorrow!) here’s a good article by pro triathlete and performance coach Danelle Kabush on some tricks to gain control of your mind to have a more successful ride:
Train Your Brain to Survive the Ride
BTW, her last tip, on how you’re lucky to be riding in the rain… I’d go further. I used to relish cold, rainy days, because most cyclists would take the day off, and I knew it was a day to make marginal gains on them. It’s not so much how much you do, but how much more you do than them.
There’s no one big thing you can do, but consistency in doing *every little thing* that you can do… pays off big.
P.S. For a good movie on the power of the mind, watch “Touching the Void.” It’s on Neflix, and it’s a true story, the dramatized documentary with interviews with the two key characters involved. When you think you’re having a hard time on the bike, or a bad day, you’ll have a very vivid and concrete example of what a bad day really looks like.
You might also like…
How Bad Do You Want It?Mastering the Psychology of Mind Over Muscle
– by Matt Fitzgerald
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