|Add distance at the beginning of a run.|
Here is the mental trick.Adding mileage or distance at the beginning of a run allows the runner to finish her workout on familiar territory. The last mile of a four mile run will feel familiar and conquerable as it is the same mile she usually runs at the end of a three mile run. The runner will think, "I've got one mile to go. I've got this." Adding distance at the end of a route with which she is familiar will do the opposite. The runner will be mentally ready to quit prior to the added distance for the same reasons - she is on the last mile of her usual route. Although the distance is the same in both situations, an additional mile will be more mentally challenging when added at the end of the familiar route.
Try this:Run a familiar route on Monday and again on Wednesday. On Friday or Saturday run the same route, but add a half to one mile run prior to tackling the same Monday/Wednesday route. The idea of longer distance may be challenging at the beginning of your workout, but by the end when you are on familiar territory it will feel conquerable. You may think, "I've got one mile to go. I've got this!" Your running app will confirm the accomplishment! Follow this same practice for a few weeks and pretty soon you will have doubled the distance on your long runs. Your next 5K race will feel short! It's all about perspective!
Whether you are a beginning runner or a seasoned competitor, this mental trick can help you in other parts of your life. When faced with a new challenge, surround yourself with familiarity. The people, positive practices and places that have helped you achieve success in the past can help you conquer the challenges ahead.
- Carol aka Running Granny Green
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