Building your physical strength may be the central goal of your fitness challenge, you need the mental strength to keep up with it. You may have a particular challenge in mind, perhaps a triathlon, a marathon or a charity event or you may have a personal fitness goal.
Either way building the mental strength to reach your goal is essential, to ensure you keep pushing yourself to succeed.
Here are 3 key techniques and ideas to keep in mind to build up your mental strength.
Comfort is great, it makes us feel secure and it can make us feel happy in a routine but it doesn’t move us forward. Constantly setting yourself challenges, whether they’re small ones to get you to the next stage or the final big challenge, gives your brain and therefore your body the motivation to push on. Physical strength comes through overcoming weight and endurance thresholds, mental strength comes through overcoming challenges.
Your long term goal or end challenge probably seems quite daunting and focusing on this constantly will lead to anxiety. Smaller blocks make all the difference and breaking your challenge down into steps, a series of mini targets perhaps, help you take a straight, efficient path to the desired end result. Gradual progression stops you becoming overwhelmed and overloaded and minimises the risk of failure.
Visualising the moment you cross that finish line or reach your target is really difficult but it’s those kind of images which will keep you on track. Numerous Olympic athletes have highlighted how imagining themselves on the winning podium pushes them towards that medal spot. Stay positive, visualise yourself overcoming your challenge or reaching your goal and your body will take over and help make this happen.
Your body and mind need to work in partnership to achieve your goals and get you through all those challenges.
I find a different exercise class quite a challenge; everyone else seems to be so co-ordinated. So I am resolved not to care and to do it anyway.
Having taken part in events previously is a huge motivator for me and it means I can genuinely remember that crossing-the-line moment rather than just visualising it and that really helps - the first time I was spurred on by the charity I was supporting.
It's challenge for me, same as everyone else. It's simple to sign up to something, then all you have to do is train for it. No extra thought involved.
how about some of those assault course, especially the really muddy ones? I take my hat off to you if you can do that!
Hi Craig, I am doing a marathon in on a wine estate in France next year - fun challenge of the year and will keep me motivated.
Challenges work for me, so I am already on the look out for 2015 ones. Any suggestions welcome!