4 Mental Tips to Overcome Pre-Race Jitters

Throughout the race, be aware of how you are holding your body (posture and form). When you think strong, you will automatically keep a more balanced posture. If you start to get tired, remind your body that you have all the energy needed to complete the task. Align your body with your thoughts. Exemplify on the outside how you choose to feel on the inside. Replace: "I am tired" with, "I am challenged, but I'm strong, and moving forward."

Provide yourself with an endless supply of motivation by supporting those around you. Dish out plenty of "Atta Girls" or "You Got This". Yell, "Thank you for being here." to onlookers, and make it a point to high five groups of people on the roadside. You'll boost your own energy, and receive it back tenfold.

Use the adrenaline and excitement of knowing the finish line is coming during your glory run. Think, "I did it. I achieved what I set out to do." In the last steps to the finish line run with pride, and put a smile on your face. You'll inspire onlookers to join in the next time around.

Tap Into Your Resources

Continue your mental training by resourcing already established behaviors. Participate in a confidence meditation. Close your eyes. Think back to a time that you accomplished something meaningful. It can be a major life experience, or a simple memory that made you feel good about your efforts. Think about the feeling derived from the experience, and the hard work you put into achieving the goal. Think about the confidence you gained as a result.

Mentally gather up all the information and data that you already know about accomplishment and install it into a picture in your mind that represents 'race day'. Visualize yourself working the 'phase strategy'. Think about yourself smiling, and holding your body strong, laughing and enjoying your surroundings. Think about crossing the finish line with hands in the air, and a feeling of accomplishment in your spirit. Visualize each detail, and be specific.

Post Race Attitude

After your race and the days to follow, your body may feel the journey. Interpret any discomfort as an experience well done. As a newbie racer, 5K or Marathon, never indulge in disappointment. When someone asks, "What was your time?" Answer with "I finished and it was great." It's unfair to your confidence and future mental training to negate yourself in any way. It is about the collective experience, and the fact that you had the courage to do something extra-ordinary on that day.

Active logoUse these tips for your next race.


De'Anna Nunez, Certified Hypnotherapist, Certified Nutrition Specialist, NLP Mental Coach and Marathoner. Founder of the Mind Body Fit Club Program, A Weight Loss Journey with Girlfriends.

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