runners group selft-reflection

The importance and power of self-reflection in achieving success

Significant race completed – now what?

Many of the big races have been completed such as New York, Boston, and the London Marathon.  The ultras are now being raced and there are so many races from 5km and beyond.  What’s next for you?

Your first significant race of the year is over, you’ve trained like a warrior, now what?

It is so easy to get stuck or lost as to what to do next if you haven’t already another race or event planned. 

Sometimes, off the back of a really big event such as a marathon, with all those hours of training, it could be the time to get a PB in a shorter distance, a window of opportunity, so that could be the next thing after a rest of course!  

It is always good for the body, mind, and soul to let it recover for a couple of weeks by keeping exercise light.  There’s no need to give up and do nothing, active recovery is great and the body adapts well, especially if you really have trained significantly differently than usual.

With all those months of training and then the race, when we return to running again, we can also find ourselves guilty of not warming up properly, not doing our drills, not cooling down properly, and not stretching.  

Podium

Self-reflection

Well, now is the time to remind ourselves. Indeed, even though it’s only 4 months into the current year, I have already been in training since last November and completed 5 significant races. Dorset Marathon (trail), Murcia Marathon ( road where I was competing for a GFA and achieved), Torrevieja Half Marathon ( off the back of the Marathon as previously discussed going for a placement in age category but coming 4th so all good), and only a few weeks ago the SDW50 mile which I completed in 11hrs7s.

I’ve several more big races in my calendar namely the UTS 50km in May, RTTK100k in June, Wendover Woods 50 mile in July, and the icing on my cake the OCC (UTMB race series in the Alps) which is 56km in August.  Then, maybe rest…..maybe!!

With several more big events and a few smaller local races to go, I have realised during training, that my technique needs a tweak, namely my head position. More often than not it is low and I’m looking at the ground and seem to have lost the use of my arms! 

The looking down can probably be attributed to the very hilly terrain my ultra races have been on and hills are scary, right?  By not looking up, I don’t see how difficult they are, so I look down, but this isn’t good for posture and actually really tires you out! The arms? Well, could probably be the same, or I’ve just got lazy!  So for me, a few sessions really looking at my form, technique and really taking the time to notice the difference by implementing small changes. I have also become very lazy at doing a proper warmup where I really concentrate on what I’m doing and not stand around chatting!

As I finish writing this document, I have just used my window of opportunity and those tweaks I mentioned, to run a very different distance of 6km and came 1st in my age category and a 2min 50 PB! 32.20 to 29.29! I never get a placement!  I think that it is important to emphasise that we should try not to limit ourselves and put ourselves in a box or category.  I’m a 5km, 10 km, marathon runner, etc. Free your mind!  

Achieve success!

Perhaps you have started to run with dinosaur arms or legs and arms all a kimbo?

Drills and strides appear in a plan – do you even know what these are and how to implement them correctly?  Don’t get them? Want to know?

Do you feel lost now and lacking direction and motivation?

Take control and let me help you. 

You can book an Athlete MOT here

Technical Feedback Session, and have individual attention, then express your interest here

If you’d like to learn about warm-up techniques, drills, strides and cool down, and have individual attention, then express your interest here

If you’d like an individual speed session or hills session, then express your interest here

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Words of Wisdom

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''Your mind is like a parachute, it works best when open''
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Jim Marrs

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