When the going gets tough…quit! This is not the type of running advice most runners expect to hear but quitting bad habits of body and mind can be just as effective as trying something new. Call it “addition by subtraction.” Instead of adding new elements to your training to get faster or break out of a rut, try subtracting these five things and you will see a drastic improvement in your running.
1. QUIT NEGATIVE SELF TALK
Believe it or not, we have control of that little voice in our heads. Never allow it to say things like, “I can’t” or “I’ am no good at this.” Replace any negative self-talk with positive messages. During a run or a race, repeat phrases like, “I feel good. I am strong. I am relaxed. This is easy.” You will be amazed at how this little mental trick can make a big difference!
2. QUIT MAKING EXCUSES
Running is a do-it-yourself project. No one else can do it for you. You alone must put in the work to achieve your goals. Don’t allow bad weather, busy schedules, or dead batteries in your ipod, keep you from getting in your workouts. We make time for the things that are important to us. We make excuses when we don’t follow through. Quit making up reasons you can’t and start creating ways you can!
3. QUIT LIMITING YOURSELF
To truly break through in running we have to give up self-limiting beliefs. When we believe something is impossible, it usually is. When we believe that we are made for more, we often surprise ourselves with breakthrough performances. Quit believing in your limits and remove a barrier to discovering just how far and fast you can go!
4. QUIT COMPARING YOURSELF TO OTHERS
You can always find someone who is slower, faster, heavier, lighter, older, or younger than you are. If you measure your success in running based on other people, you lose focus of the only person who really matters, and the only person you can control, yourself. Quit comparing yourself to others and focus on your own PR’s, goals, and personal progress. If you are making progress then you are winning and have a reason to celebrate each accomplishment!
5. QUIT WAITING FOR SOMEDAY
Think of one thing you would like to do someday. Maybe you want to run your first 5K, marathon, or ultra. Maybe you want to join a running club in your area or start doing core exercises before you go to bed each night. Whatever it is, quit waiting for “someday” and get started now. The first step is the hardest and then you will have momentum to carry you. If the only thing stopping you is getting started, then make someday today!
Vince Lombardi once said, “Winners never quit and quitters never win.” There is a lot of wisdom in that quote, but if we know what to quit, and what to subtract from our running, we just might find ourselves one stride closer to victory.