THE 7 HABITS OF HIGHLY EFFECTIVE MARATHONERS
this summer, you’ll need to do more than log kilometres and complete key workouts. These strategies will help you set appropriate goals, persevere when the going gets tough, and create a mindset that’s primed for success.
Use these cuttingedge strategies to set appropriate race-day goals, train like a champion, and persevere when the going gets tough. BY BRAD STULBERG AND STEVE MAGNESS
to a breakthrough race may lie in unexpected places. Sure, most runners dissect their long runs, interval workouts, and nutrition; but the best runners look beyond those metrics to reach their full potential. That was the key takeaway from researching and reporting our new book, Peak Performance: Elevate Your Game, Avoid Burnout, and Thrive with the New Science of Success.
Although one of us (Steve) coaches pro athletes and the other (Brad) writes about sports science, we discovered novel ways to optimise athletic performance by interviewing world-class artists, intellectuals, entrepreneurs, and musicians. By looking outside of running – and studying not only physiology but also psychology, sociology, and even philosophy – we uncovered powerful strategies that can help all athletes succeed.
While we learned far more than can fit on these pages (that’s why we wrote a book!), what follows are seven of our favourite discoveries, all backed by the latest scientific research.
may be possible to transcend this – if you stay inspired. For a recent study, researchers used brain scans to examine what happens when people are presented with threatening messages. In individuals who were asked to reflect deeply on their core values (eg, to be a good spouse or parent, to have courage) prior to receiving such a message, their underlying neurology became more receptive: the test subjects’ brains moved the subjects toward the challenge instead of going into protection mode. In other words, the more we think about our deep-seated beliefs, the better we rise above shallow, in-the-moment concerns and disconnect from our body’s perceived limits. APPLY IT
Set a goal beyond running 42.2km. Consider raising money for a charity you support, dedicating your race to a person or a cause, or joining a team. Your purpose needn’t be complex: it can be as simple as “to inspire my children to live a healthy lifestyle” or “to be part of a positive community when the world seems to need positivity.” When the going gets tough – during your most challenging workouts or on race day – reflect on your purpose to help you power through.