Workouts are hard to get through sometimes, that’s just reality. Sometimes you get to the gym with the best of intentions, everything starts off well, but then you lose steam and quit just when things are getting tough. It could be physical exhaustion, mental exhaustion or simply a lack of motivation. Whatever it is, it’s interfering with your progress.
I’m getting better at pulling through tough workouts, but in the past I’ve been known to give up before finishing. Most of the time, I just talked myself out of it. I would get to the point in my run or bike ride when it was getting difficult – my heart rate was up, my muscles were burning, or it just felt boring and I would convince myself that I had done enough. And it didn’t take much convincing.
This was a big issue for me, so when I started really training hard for climbing, I realized that I had to do something about this mental block or else I would never see any progress. I think it’s different for everyone, but one thing really seemed to work for me.
When I am approaching that mental block, or I can feel it creeping on, I think about what it really takes to become the best of the best. It doesn’t only take strength and power, things targeted specifically in a workout, it also requires stamina and determination, qualities achieved through persevering. Athletes push through the difficult, not succumb to it.
Understanding the mental component and how training also trains the mind, was a huge eye opener for me. When I feel like giving up at about 40mins into my hour long cardio session, I think about how important it is to stay focused. When I feel like stopping half way through some tough 4x4s, I think about how I need to push through, just like in a competition. I guess I could call this mental training.
It doesn’t sound like much, but it works for me. My advice to you is that if you are training hard for something, be award of how important it is to push through. Your muscles can carry you a lot further than you think; you just need to harness the mental power to realize it.
climb on xx