Pick up some tips on getting through that mental push needed at the end of a marathon.

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*Courtesy of RunHaven

You may have heard that the hardest part of running is the mental game — and I tend to agree. Your body has to be prepared, but as any seasoned runner can attest, if your head is not in the game, you’ll probably back out way before your muscles do.

As I crank up my mileage to prepare for my marathon, these are some tips I’ve heard to get mentally prepared to push to the end. See if you’ve heard these tips, believe in them or have some to add!

  1. It’s just another half.
  2. Count down the miles after 13, instead of counting up to 26.
  3. Don’t count miles, count time. Think about going on a three to four-hour run.
  4. Reflect on all your training runs. Remember each one from the past few months and remember they were all working towards this moment.
  5. Dedicate each mile to a person or cause. Think of them when you need inspiration.
  6. Think about your arms once your legs get tired.
  7. Smile, it gives you more energy and gets people excited to cheer for you.
  8. Think of distance in water-stop chunks. “Just get to the next one.” Once you do, make a fuss over the volunteers and thank them.
  9. Don’t focus on the fact that your body is literally coming apart and you are dying.
  10. Try to solve this riddle (it burns miles): There are seven countries with the letter p that don’t begin with p. Name five. (Tweet @ndiblasio when you’ve figured this out!)