Race Day Inspiration: Learn from the Pros

by Louise | February 26th, 2014 | Fitness Expert

running (400x400)Every runner has their own special motivation for running. You might run for your health, for the competitive aspect, for companionship, to get places, all of the above, or none of the above. Whatever it is, it’s a fantastic reason to run as long as what inspires you keeps you going. However, when race day approaches, sometimes your brain can use an extra kick start so that you’re truly ready to race. Nothing is worse than feeling sluggish on the starting line. So what can you do to mentally prepare for race day? One great way to pump up your running mentality is to look to the pros for inspiration.

Read up on current track news. Did you know that Galen Rupp recently broke the national indoor track record for the 2-mile? You can watch his performance on Flotrack. Flotrack is a fantastic website for keeping up with the latest news in track. They do thorough coverage of some of the hottest races in the current. Recently, Coach Salazar and his Nike Oregon Project team have been the center of attention, going after a number of American records. It’s amazing how frequently the American records are being broken. A 17-year-old member of the project, Mary Cain (still in high school but a certified professional), recently broke the world junior record in the 1,000m run with her 2:35.8 performance at the New Balance Indoor Grand Prix in Boston.

Watch inspirational running videos. The amount of available material on the web is absolutely staggering. There are definitely a few recurring types of inspirational running videos:

  • World records/Professional races – It can be truly inspirational to watch videos of “fellow” runners performing incredible feats in the sport. Even if you’re preparing for a marathon, watching a world-record sprint (did someone mention Usain Bolt?) can be extremely inspiring.
  • Surprising comebacks – My all-time favorite comeback video is that of Heather Dorniden, who manages to win a competitive 600m race after falling down with just 200m to go. If you haven’t already seen it, watch it here. You will not be disappointed.
  • Epic finishes – Sometimes, it’s hard to connect with professional races, because the results seem so out of reach. However, it’s hard to find a runner not moved by watching an epic finish. You know the ones I’m talked about — runners approaching the line with wobbly knees or down-right crawling. After you’ve seen a finish like that, what you’re going through doesn’t seem so bad, right?

The only problem with watching videos is that getting absorbed in one video can suck you into watching the next video on the list, and before you know it you’ve spent an hour in front of the computer. It’s best to not let online video cut into your night-before-race sleep. Set a time limit that ends well before your planned bedtime.

Extra adrenaline on the starting line can turn average preparation into a pleasantly surprising performance (and it will probably be less painful too).




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