Become a Member

Get access to more than 30 brands, premium video, exclusive content, events, mapping, and more.

Already have an account? Sign In

Become a Member

Get access to more than 30 brands, premium video, exclusive content, events, mapping, and more.

Already have an account? Sign In

Brands

Health

5 Simple Strategies To Stop Saying “I Think I Can’t”

Sports psychologist Barbara Walker shares how to overcome common struggles—including feeling you can't do anything you set your mind to.

Get access to everything we publish when you sign up for Outside+.

can't

Sports psychologist Barbara Walker shares strategies for overcoming five common struggles.

“I can’t stick to a running routine.”
It may be daunting to know you’ll be running 20 miles during training, but if you take it week by week, that will build confidence like crazy. Find a training group, which will help you stay on track with your goals.

“What makes me think I can finish this run today when I haven’t before?”
It’s a new run—but it’s also a new day! Your body has never been exactly where it is right now. Slow down if you need to in order to finish.

“I’m not good enough to be called a runner.”
Repeat the cues, “I am an athlete” or “I am a strong runner” over and over again. Before long, you’ll believe it—it’s already true!

“I’m too tired to push to the finish line.”
Think, I can do anything for 30 seconds. Get through that little hump, reassess and then repeat that idea in your head until you’re crossing the finish.

“That runner is gaining on me.”
You have no control over anybody else out there. Run your best race and pay attention to yourself. Cheer her on if she passes you by—either way you’ll see her at the finish!