Race-Day Ready: putting in the mental work for a breakthrough race
I'd stowed my bag, buckled the belt, popped my headphones in, pulled my hood up over my head and closed my eyes. Sitting on the plane to Italy tucked into my cocoon I tried drifting off to sleep. But sleep didn't come. Instead my mind was filled with, all the doubt, fear and insecurity that had dogged me at nearly every race in 2018.How would I put that all behind me and race to the best of my ability at the World Snowshoe Championships?I have always been a visual and kinesthetic learner: I need to see it and I need to move through it. Usually that comes in the form of writing things down. I know! I thought.My eyes popped open, removed my hood and reached for my backpack pulling out pen and notebook. I started writing the thoughts in my head furiously.I have always put pen to paper when I want to process and work through my biggest emotions and difficult life circumstances. When I was struggling with an eating disorder, writing in my journal was one of the ways I coped with the negative thoughts and quite literally re-wrote the narrative in my mind.So how was this any different?I dug my journal out of backpack and instead of simply journaling my feelings, I started to create a template, a workbook that helped me lay out my goals, face all my fears and find the strength that I knew I had within me. I then spent the next hour going through each question I had posed for myself, filling in the blanks, responding to the prompts and closing my eyes to for the visualizations I had created.The workbook I created for myself that night on the plane to Italy WORKED.It dealt with all the fear, doubt and insecurity I was holding onto and shifted my mindset so I could perform at my best. I had a breakthrough race at the World Snowshoe Championships in part because of my solid physical preparation and hard work, but also because I DID THE MENTAL WORK. So often we put all our effort and energy into the training, but spend little time preparing our minds for race day.I've since put that template I made for myself into a downloadable workbook that I'll be making available on my website. Sound like something you're interested in? Shoot me an email and let me know!
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