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The Power of Positive Thinking

The Power of Positive Thinking

Recently at one of the expos we attended, we had several conversations about the to-do’s or not to-do’s of running. Whether or not having a running mantra is important was one of those discussions. So, we wanted to bring this same discussion to the rest of our running audience- you all!

How many of you use a running mantra when you do a race? And, if you use a running mantra in your race, do you also use that mantra when you are training? What we have found is that mantras can certainly be used for training runs, but more often than not, they come in to play during the event itself.

Running is just as much, if not more, a mental sport as much as it is physical. Obviously, you have to put in the miles and strength training in your weeks leading up to the race. But when it comes down to the moment itself of lining up at the start line, the power of positive thinking plays a role to which we do not lend enough credit.

For example, if you go into a race that is obviously full of hills and mountainous miles, if you have a fear of that, it can dominate your thoughts, creating a negative space for you to complete your race well. So you need to replace that with positive thinking- a mantra. Perhaps you would say “No Fear” over and over. Or maybe “I got this.” It’s proven that what you repeat in your thought process plays a role in how the outcome unfolds. Rather than thinking “how many more hills?” or “I’m hurting” replace that thought (even if it is true in the moment) with “I am strong” and push through not only the hill or the pain, but the negative thought.

It’s not just hills that create mental obstacles, that is only one example. Perhaps you are coming out of an injury or maybe a season of difficult days. Pushing through those mental blocks are just as challenging. Find a mantra that will help you believe in yourself. Envision the finish line and crossing it and say “I will win.” Or “Fast. Furious. Strong.” These are just a few examples. Really, you just need to find what will help define you in the moment and get you through the blocks that come with the beautiful sport of running.

You are capable of more than you realize. You just have to embrace that inner confidence that comes with the completion of races and embody that as you stand at the start line. Instead of fear or dread or what-ifs filling your mind, look at that start line, and change your mindset with a positive mantra to beat the negative beast that wants to encroach on your territory of a running victory.

So, as we are asked, “What should my mantra be?” Well, our answer is that really a mantra is an individual preference that has to be reflectively determined based upon the mental block you might be facing. But do they help? Yes, we believe in the power of a mantra. If it helps you, it’s a beautiful way to overcome an obstacle. The power of positive thinking can make all the difference between finishing a race and finishing it strong and confidently with a smile, knowing you gave it all you had.