How to Mentally Prepare for a Great Run
Oprah Winfrey once said, “Running is the greatest metaphor for life, because you get out of it what you put into it.”
Since becoming part of Team NutriBullet, I’m seeing a real metaphor for the Nutribullet philosophy. The Nutribullet uses everything you put into it. Each fruit and vegetable that goes in comes out in an extracted form, ready to fuel our bodies with the most nutrition for optimal performance.
Building mental toughness takes on the same principle. If you fill your mind with positive, self-fulfilling thoughts and eliminate the doubt and negativity, you’re going to see better results. You are what you think.
Sounds simple right?
However, just like preparing your ingredients to make your Nutriblast, your mind and body must similarly prepare. You need to learn how to clear your mind and concentrate on the task at hand. This, in turn, will leave you in a state of total awareness and will leave no room for nagging self-doubt. This is the practice of Mindfulness.
Let’s start with two simple exercises on the quest to become Mindful:
LESSON 1: Spend five minutes doings deep belly breathing to release your tension. Put one hand on your shoulder and the other on your belly and take a deep breath in through your nose and count to six. Now exhale through your mouth to the count of six. Your belly should expand with each inhale and release with each exhale. Your shoulder should not move. All your breathing is coming from your belly. Nice slow, long, deep breathes. Do this once in the morning and once in the evening.
LESSON 2: Get in touch with your senses. This will help you stay in the moment. When you go to make your NutriBlast today, I want you try something different. Having done your breathing first, clear your mind of all other thoughts and concentrate of what you’re doing. Peeling an orange, cutting a bell pepper, washing spinach, opening a bag of chia seeds… Use all your senses. Be aware of the water running down your hand as you clean the spinach. How does it feel? As you peel the orange how does it smell? What sound do your hear when you’re opening the refrigerator and cutting the bell pepper? If you find your mind wandering bring it back to the task at hand. Complete this process as you make your NutriBlast. Close your eyes and listen to the sound of the extractor. As you consume your NutriBlast, be cognizant of the texture, taste and temperature.
When you’ve finished, jot down a paragraph of what you just experienced. I guarantee you will find that you’ve just taken the time to slow your mind down and experience awareness without a wandering mind. Feeling peaceful? Take it a step further. On your next run, concentrate only on your breathing or the sound of your feet striking the pavement. Keep practicing with everyday tasks. You’re on your way to becoming mindful!