This might seem weird or maybe I’m not the only one that does this. And just like every lesson learned while running, it can be applied to everyday life. So if you are not a runner, try and make it a habit of doing this.
Every long distance runner or endurance athlete has a nutrition and hydration plan. I like to take a sip of water every 5 minutes and intake calories every 30 minutes on my long runs or during my races.
But I believe there is a huge gap that many overlook and don’t even think about.
That is the mental plan.
There are a bunch of things that I do to mentally training for and practice during my longs runs and I wanted to share the easiest and most simple thing.
Even if you are telling yourself to do it, you still reap the benefits as if something is making you smile. Smiling releases endorphins, which reduces pain, stress and anxiety. And it also makes you more attentive and in the moment, which is a must in really long, all-day events. Otherwise you’ll just beat yourself down thinking about how much further you have to go.
Things are more enjoyable when you smile, even if you are miserable.
Try it on your next run. Maybe try and remind yourself once every 30 minutes or so to do it.
Hell, do it right now and see how much better you feel!
When we reached the last aid station with about 3 miles left to go, the volunteers told us that we didn’t even look like we had just run 40+ miles. We were all smiles and laughing even though we actually felt like shit.
So smile! Stay positive, enjoy the moment and be happy