This weekend’s race promises to be a scorcher here in Baltimore: a high of 92 with a zillion percent humidity. Yesterday, when talking about it with my friend Jess, who is also racing, she commented that “it won’t be a PR,” and shrugged her shoulders. The funny thing is, she can take that attitude and still turn out a fantastic race. Me? If I start thinking about the heat and how it won’t allow for a good race time, I’ll proceed to implode on race day. Instead, I’m taking the attitude that I’m primed for a good race, no matter what the conditions.
I’ve found over time that I need to have this kind of positive attitude, and a boat load of confidence, to race well. If I don’t, well, I can’t summon the right performance from my legs. This has proven itself out time and again for me. I’m amazed at someone like Jess who can pull it off no matter what. I wish I had a dose of that! But I guess I have the next best thing, which is knowing what’s necessary for me to perform well.
It’s been said 1,000 times before–running is a mental game, and I’m a believer in that. Running Times has a great article this month on how different athletes need different approaches to racing to be successful. The important thing is figuring out what you need and then executing it. What mental strategies work for you?