Do you want to Run Faster? Well, here’s a tip that doesn’t include speed work or $300 running shoes… it’s a very important element of training to PR or get faster – and yet so many runners don’t make it a priority! I’m talking about – your mental training.
Today we’re focused on a Running Mantra that can help you feel stronger, faster and more confident while running.
This isn’t woo-woo lalaland nonsense. This is important.
Why you need a Mantra for Running
We’re told over and over that 90% of running is mental. Your MIND tells you to give up BEFORE your BODY is truly done.
Our brain’s survival instincts tell us to stop before we’re too depleted.
So if you want to overcome that little voice that tells you to quit… that makes you think you’re too tired or should slow down or stop – you need to train your mind to stay positive and strong while running.
How do you train your mind to stay positive?
Well, one way is to have a go-to phrase or mantra that you can use when your mind starts to wander to a negative place.
And you can’t wait until you’re at mile 11, tired and dehydrated and watching your pace slow down… to think up something positive to focus on to push through.
You know the golden rule of running: Don’t try anything new on race day.
Mindset training has to be a part of your training plan. And one exercise you can do to work on your mental game for running is – identifying a good mantra and using it.
Do you have a running mantra right now?
What is your running mantra?
Today’s challenge is to pick a running mantra. Have it in your back pocket to pull out when you are having a hard run.
Mental tricks to get you through the rough days are important. We all struggle at some point. But you are ahead of the game if you have a plan to overcome those struggles. It can be a phrase “just do it” or one word “hustle” or whatever works for YOU.
How to choose your running mantra:
1. Think of a few words or phrases that inspire you.
What words make your feel strong, fast, brave, etc? Is there a quote from someone you admire, a song or a movie that you love? >>> Write these ideas down.
2. Create your mantra by:
a.) Putting a few ‘power words’ together. Example: “Brave, Strong, Fast!”
b.) Saying – ‘I am ________ ” before your favorite ‘power word’ Example: “I am fast!”
c.) Making your fave quote flow so it’s easy to think/say in a few beats.
Example: One of my favorite motivational quotes is from a super old running shoes ad. It’s very long – basically a whole poem!
But the last line is powerful to me because I know the whole quote.
So your mantra might not speak to anyone else – that’s fine. It only has to work for you – it’s YOUR MANTRA. It’s the thing you’ll say in your head when it gets tough.
Think about using to to encourage yourself by saying it in your head, say it out loud a few times to see how it feels.
3. Motivational, Special, Easy to Remember and Recite.
Make sure it makes you want to push harder, but doesn’t tear you down. Keep it positive and encouraging.
4. Practice using it.
This is important! Just like practicing your nutrition & hydration before race day so you know it works well for your body… you should practice using your mantra to be sure it works for your mind. Use it during a few long runs and/or hard workouts. Try out a few different ones and see what sticks.
Example of a Running Mantra from a favorite inspirational quote:
This is one of my favorite inspirational running quotes….
“All your life you are told the things you cannot do. All your life they will say you’re not good enough or strong enough or talented enough…” (It’s a long motivational message from an old Nike ad.)
I can use this to inspire my Running Mantra by taking a part of it that speaks to me and turning that into a shorter phrase.
So my running mantra can be – “You will tell them Yes”
Next… I need to use it during a few runs – especially harder ones, to see if it’s as inspiring as needed.
If it works – keep it. If it doesn’t – test out a few other options.
What’s your running mantra?
Want to keep going? Check these out:
Run Faster this Month – Tip 1 and 2
Fast Friday Podcast episode – How to Run Strides
Running and Food Questions – podcast 61