I’ve got a mate who runs crazy long ultra marathons.
Not just your average ultras, he does the crazy, multi-day, hundreds of miles ones.And he’s good at them.
He’s got a technique he uses if he’s struggling during a long race…
He’ll ask himself, ‘Why do I feel like this?’
(aside from the fact he’s running a ridiculously long distance, usually in really hilly places, and usually in the cold and wet!!)
But ignoring these obvious causes of discomfort, he’ll then try to get to the bottom of why he maybe isn’t feeling great by working through a checklist…
Do I need to eat something?
Is it a while since I’ve had a drink?
Do I need to put on another layer?
Or take a layer off?
Do I need to stop and take a short rest?
It reminds him of two things:
- He has SOME CONTROL over how he feels.
- What he can change to help him FEEL AND PERFORM BETTER.
I really like this idea because it doesn’t just apply to running ultra marathons.
We can use it in our day to day lives too.
I’ll often use it on days I’m feeling tired, sluggish or struggling to focus.
Simply asking that question, ‘Why do I feel like this?’
Then thinking about whether I need to drink more water, have something to eat, take a break, move or get some fresh air.
It’s a welcome reminder that much like my mate during his ultras, we do have SOME CONTROL over how we feel and perform.
What we eat and drink, exercising and just general movement, getting sunlight and fresh air, taking breaks and time to rest, these things all play a vital role.
Try it next time you feel like your energy or focus isn’t where you want it to be.
Ask yourself ‘Why do I feel like this?’ and work through your own checklist to see what you can change to help you feel and perform better.