As most of you know, I’ve spent the past couple of months training for my next big challenge: running my first ultramarathon at the North Face DC Endurance Challenge 50K in April. I’m about halfway through training right now, and there’s still a lot ahead of me. There are definitely a lot of physical gains to be had during training. But a big part of the training is also mental, and it’s just as important to build up your confidence during this process.
The cornerstone, and biggest confidence booster, of most long distance training plans is the long run. It’s the workout each week (or two workouts, in the case of a back to back weekend) where you push yourself further, increase your endurance, and become stronger. There are a lot of physiological benefits to these runs, but there are also mental gains to be had. There’s a big difference between finishing a long run feeling horrible versus finishing feeling good. If you can set yourself up to finish feeling good, I think it has a profound effect on your overall strength as a distance runner. It’s a huge confidence boost, which is important.
There are both physical and mental aspects to confidence. When you toe the start line on race day, you may be physically confident based on your training. But you also have to feel mentally confident about the task at hand. All that work you did during training helps prepare you for that. At some point, it’s going to get tough on race day. Looking back on your accomplishments during training can be one implement in your toolbox to help keep you mentally strong.
I think that some types of confidence are in our nature – either you’re born with it or not. But others come from putting in the work to know that you can realize your dreams. You train for confidence. Trust in your training, and prove to yourself that your goals are achievable.
Today’s post is part of Debbie’s Wednesday Word link up. Each week she provides us with a word prompt and this week’s word, of course, is confident. This link up is great, and it definitely gets me writing about things I probably wouldn’t otherwise think to write about. Be sure to click on the button below to join in and see who else is linking up today!
How do you build your confidence when facing a challenge?