This blog is an excerpt from our input into The Marathon Marcus blog. Marcus and I have been working together for the last few months in preparation for his sub-3 hour performance in Berlin and we enjoy being able to share some of that journey.
I’ve spoken with a handful of runners preparing for different events in the last two weeks, and in nearly every conversation we’ve spoken about the importance of retaining perspective.
*This tip today is for the athletes that have the odd occasion where they don’t hit their target pace – if this is a consistent issue then you may want to restructure your training or look at your lifestyle inputs surrounding your performance and recovery*
When training for an event, you train to peak AT the event. If you are hitting every single pace target in all of your workouts the question to ask is “am I being challenged enough?”
If you have the days where you are unable to hit your targets, feel that emotion and feel the disappointment – and store it to ignite your next workout/ to draw from come race day. Then in the next 36 hours reflect on why you were unable to keep pace – maybe you will find an answer and therefore a solution, but sometimes there won’t be other than the fact that the workouts are stretching you to peak for your event.
By working with a professional you can most definitely build mental skills that can:
• that can help you work through the low during the workout
• that can help you gain perspective and move through it post-run ready for your next workout
• add a protective layer to reduce the number of disappointing moments
On the flip side of this, celebrate the days when you do hit your target. Celebrate the days when you’re in a great flow and training is a breeze, celebrate the days when you are most certainly not in a good flow and you have to slog it out. Celebrate completing a workout where you didn’t hit your targets. It’s all money in the bank come race day, both physically and mentally.
Keep pushing forwards, and find ways to reflect whether through journaling, conversations with your trusted circle (family, training peers, coach etc.) or through taking that step back to retain your perspective of your journey to the race.
Marcus: It was really helpful in being able to talk through the workouts that didn’t go to plan, and set some strategies in place about how I could make the best next steps to refocus in the hard moments.