Coach Hillary Kigar explains how runners can use the power of the mind to help them on race day.

Develop Your Racing Toolbox

No matter if you finish toward the back or the front of the pack, there is always that moment in a race when you feel like you have hit the wall—like you can’t go any faster, and you may wonder if you can even finish at all. The answer is YOU CAN! At that moment, you need to go into your toolbox and start pulling out the mental tricks. Just like the old saying “mind over matter,” with running, it is “mind over legs”! The power of the mind is incredible. Some people like to get angry during those rough moments. Others find their happy place as they try to ignore the pain. I suggest coming up with a word, a phrase or an image that fills you with strength. Maybe you are running in memory of a loved one, or maybe your favorite Earth, Wind and Fire song fires you up, or maybe you imagine a lion roaring with ferocity. Whatever it is, keep it right in the forefront of your mind and let it carry you through the toughest moments! (And turn to page 35 to learn more about creating a race-day mantra.)


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