Have you been in the position where you look at the task ahead and just get totally overwhelmed thinking “how can I get through this?” Then you actually start and after completing the first part you realise that you are going ok however you’re not yet half way. You get to half way and you’re not feeling too bad and finally the last part is a challenge, but nowhere near as bad as you had anticipated.
Breaking things down into manageable chunks is the only way to tackle ‘big’ challenges. That old phrase ‘control the controllable’ comes back and in this case it means looking after first things first and that is very simply controlling the present moment. This is the most simple and effective way to get things done, yet we often get caught up in telling ourselves otherwise.
In a training setting it’s common for us to be using ‘sets’ or ‘reps’ to break down sessions. This is for physiological reasons and to allow our body to handle the work. In saying that it is an opportunity to practice viewing our training and racing in the same way. Breaking it down into reps to get it done. Some interesting research is emerging about the effect of the brain on fatigue and in particular fatigue in sports performance. Where the mind is willing the body will be able. Likewise if the mind is not willing the body can also decline in performance. The concept is simple and in my experience and opinion, undeniably true. I’ve seen athletes that should perform well have bad days and seen athletes perform above and beyond their ability from pure grit and want to get the most out of themselves.
You only ever have to do something once. As soon as you start the first rep of that set of 30x100’s or you’re at the start line of a half marathon race, just remember you only have to do it once. One rep at a time. You know you can get through 100m or 1km or 10 mins. Whatever it is you choose to break it down to. For that 100m, 1k or 10 mins all you have to control is that time and do your best in that moment. Before you know it you are onto the next rep. Repeat mind set, one, rep, at, a time.
That is how great sessions and races are done. One bit at a time. You will be able to achieve far more than can imagine using this way of thinking/doing. Because we all know that we can do just one more…