Long runs are great for fitness and overall wellbeing. You can burn heaps of calories and increase muscle tone with this type of super-hyped aerobic exercise. It is also great to increase every part of the body including a delegated focus on: heart, lungs, muscle tissue and brain health, too.
It is important to note the intrinsic importance of an individual’s mentality when going on long runs. The distance isn’t really important, and it doesn’t even matter if you are running two miles or twelve, actually. The body will always go forward as best as it can, but this is always dependent on the fitness level it has, as well as the fuel it has been given, through factors of diet and hydration as vital necessities.
There is one more undeniable factor that is also very important in the execution of successful long runs. We have already mentioned the other two as: fitness level and diet/hydration fuel factors. The third factor is an individual’s mentality. Mentality is what you tell yourself before and during the exercise routine. It is the dialogue you have with yourself inside your head. Are you talking to yourself positively? Or are you coaxing yourself into submission or failure? These are really important questions to ask – both before your run and during your run. As a beginner, intermediate or long term athlete, you need to have the mindset of a champion, to really get your intentions clear…to yourself. So let’s take a look at the five steps for success when incorporating a positive, ‘must have’ mentality:
Put all of your ideas down for the week, and revisit them every Sunday (habitually), so then you know where you are heading for that frame of time. The next week should increase upon these goals so that your focus can be built on, during each new week. Monday – affirm daily goal in mind and out loud, run 1mile and include twenty minutes of strength training. Tuesday – affirm daily goal in mind and out loud, run 1.1 miles and include 25 minutes of strength training. These are just examples, and you can build on them even more. Essentially you may include your meal plans and meditation or yoga practices, where possible, as well. You may want to keep yourself at the same level for that week, too. The end goal is not as important as the act of just having one. Be mindful of that, always.
A Goal for the Day
What are your daily goals? Say them about ten times a day, in your mind. Let your subconscious become aware of your plans too. Now say them out loud, and look at yourself in the mirror. Be clear, be positive…every single time. Affirmations are very important to the conscious and subconscious mindset. They are a proven reality in sports at a professional level.
Visualization techniques can work wonders for long run training, and the use of imagery is a powerful tool to the mind, both consciously and subconsciously. The use of imagination in meditation or daydreaming, is a wonderful addition to your goal setting, and overall positive technique.
Say, “I am getting to the checkpoint,” “I am going great,” or “Keep going you’ve got this!” Your body responds to your mind in amazing, unbelievable ways. If you believe it is possible, then your body will too. So, “fake it ‘till you make it,” as the saying goes. You can really do whatever you want, especially if your mind believes in it first.
Positive Self Talk
Yes! These steps really do work for the other goals in your life, too. They can work for: health promotion, weight loss, passing exams, landing that dream job, buying a new car or even cooking a beautiful meal! Believing in yourself is a proven, fundamental mindset used by millions of successful people in many areas including: sports, business, politics, spirituality and education too.
Just remember the three factors for long runs: 1. Current fitness level 2. Fuel (diet/hydration) 3. Mindset. When you incorporate all three, you really can’t go wrong. More importantly, remember to set goals that are always achievable, and if you don’t reach them then try again tomorrow, or the next day, or even next week. The most integral part of your mentality here is to believe that you can achieve, because when you do this you set yourself up for real miracles! You’ve got this, so really…plan it out…and go for it!
This article is presented by Maria Banfield, she is a guest blogger and fitness lover. She enjoys contributing to websites that help individuals to grow. She has been a writer for many top websites and loves researching topics. She currently writes for the leading website Fit and Heal.