How will your training fit into your week?
Have you ever felt disorganized, overwhelmed, and unsure of how you are going to accomplish everything?
Training is one of the ways that we learn and become better athletes. It is mandatory for race success. As endurance athletes, where we sometimes struggle when it comes to training is seeing the month (or week) of training ahead and feeling overwhelmed or doubtful that you will get it done.
The more stressed we are about it, the more likely we’ll find excuses (“I’m too busy with family/work.”) and distractions (“I have to finish this first, and then I can do my run.”), so that we can’t do it.
Other training barriers may be, self-sabotage, listening to disempowering self-talk, anxiety, issues with perfectionism, and low self-trust or self-confidence.
To overcome roadblocks, do a visualization for your training.
They allow us to see a detailed, bigger picture. Visualizations can also improve our awareness, ways we problem solve, and builds our consistency to follow through on plans and tasks.
Use details including when you’re going to train. Write it in your notebook or journal. Write this visualization for every day of the week before the start of the week. Your actual training will be more specific than in this activity.
The purpose of this activity is to increase awareness of when you can train and to reinforce the likelihood of not missing a workout.
- Write your plan, tasks, and or schedule down in a planner or on a calendar.
- Personally, I use an annual planner. I use it for planning and tracking personal, business, and race training details.
- My husband and I use a white board calendar and Google calendar to help us stay organized, and on the same page, as well.
- Journal or jot down the details of your plan, tasks, and or schedule.
- What you are going to do.
- When you are going to do them.
- Where you’re going to do them.
- Example: Monday: after breakfast, I’m going to brush my teeth and get dressed for my run. I’ll do my run warmup and then the run. After dinner, I’ll go to the garage and lift weights.
- Example: Tuesday: after breakfast, I’m going to brush my teeth and get ready for my run. I’ll prep a post run protein shake and drive to the track. At the track, I’ll do my run and strength work, then have my shake. Before bed, I’ll do yoga and foam rolling.
- You can organize this for each day of the week.
- Example: Monday: I’m going to… ; Tuesday: After dinner… ; Wednesday: …
- Visualize with details. Be specific.
- The specific details help us know what, when, and where, which increases the likelihood that you will follow through with your intentions and priorities.
- This activity helps you to better figure out (problem solve) how your to-do’s fit into your week.
- In the long-term, it helps with building consistency, following through, and race success.
- After completing each day, use something to mark it off, like a highlighter, colored marker, or sticker.
- This can be a fun visual to see what you’ve accomplished.
- I like to do this for my race training, it is satisfying to see all of the hard work that I poured into preparing for a race.
- How rewarding would it be to see the majority of your tasks marked off or highlighted in bright colors?
- Reflect on your accomplishments for the week, even the small ones.
- Avoid minimizing your accomplishments.
- Be honest with yourself about your level of effort, while understanding that your level of energy or fatigue can increase and decrease depending on what you’re going through in life and for how long. There will be highs and lows. Work hard, but know when to be kind to yourself.
A final thought: This article is about the importance of getting your training done and how you may want to try going about that, but it is also important to consider when to be flexible.
There will be times when something comes up or training cannot be a priority for that day (or week). It’s okay!
Inspiration: Kyle Kranz
More on Visualizing and Prioritizing How to Accomplish Tasks (Goes to Finish Stronger Counseling)
Are you ready to dig into your mindset and mental wellness?
I work with endurance runners and athletes all over the United States who want to dial in their race mentality, mental strategies, and overall improve their mental wellness.
– My coaching services are fully on the mental side (I am a National Certified Counselor and Licensed Professional Counselor in PA, coaching is a non-clinical service).
Here’s some of what we can do:
- Improve day-to-day mental wellbeing.
- Build better habits.
- Incorporate mindfulness
- Learn emotion regulation skills.
- Set challenging, yet attainable goals.
- Discuss motivation
- Address body image thoughts or concerns.
- Talk about you! Who are you, besides a runner or athlete? – parent, sibling,
- entrepreneur, community member… What else do you do, and how does it impact training for races or vice versa?
- Coping with injury and setbacks.
- Juggling priorities and time management.
- Are you actively trying to find a mental health professional? I can assist!
- Are you searching for a running coach? I can provide pointers on how to go about finding someone who’s a good fit and what questions to ask the coach when interviewing them for fit.
- Mental strategies and mindset for racing.
- Training and race day visualization.
- Generalized anxiety and race day anxiety.
- What might you do if you encounter a problem during a race.
- Building trust with yourself.
- Improving self-care, self-esteem, and self-compassion.
- Knowing when to push yourself and when to be kinder to yourself.
- Why’s and meaning behind what you do. Passion. Using that as support and drive.
- On top of talking, I do provide resources and homework.
Where’s the chair, I need to sit down?! … I hope that this give you an idea of the good stuff that we can cover.
Contact me if you have questions or want to schedule.
I look forward to learning about what you’d like to work on.
The Scarecrow Runner Podcast: Marathons, ultras, mindset, and stories
Road Dog Podcast: Mental wellness and ultrarunning
The Ultramarathon Mindset Podcast with Eric Deeter: Cougars, mantras, and swearing (2022)
How Do You Get Pumped Up to Race?
Race Start Mindset and Strategy
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