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Fitness Matters | On Pep Talks and Mantras

September 27, 2015

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“If you don’t keep moving, the miles will never come.”  I kept repeating this simple mantra sentence in my head last week during the Bozeman marathon. Both mentally and physically I fell apart during the race and wanted to stop. I was in need of some serious pep talks with myself out there on those long, hot, and quiet roads. The experience reminded me to not look humbly at the mountainous goal you have to reach, but to keep the focus on one mile at a time.

This is applicable to a fitness goal of any kind. Try to think of taking your fitness journey one single moment or day at a time, one squat at a time, one push-up at a time, just one more burpee, one more rep, set, etc…Each “just one more” will keep you in forward motion towards your end goals.

Along the way, it is discouraging to not see immediate results. There will be the highs and the lows, the momentum and the setbacks. However, you will get there with the right motivation in your head. Every time I stopped to walk in the race, I felt the miles slowing down even more. That was quitting to me. I had to keep moving so that those mile markers kept coming. Somewhere around mile 16, I wanted to quit and jump on a horse I ran by so it could rush me that dreamy finish line. It seemed to make way more sense than suffering the way I was. I wanted to “just get to” mile 20 because that meant I would be closer to mile 21. At that point, it would be exciting because I would only be 3 miles from mile 24 which meant only 2 more miles until the finish. Then it would all be over. This is the “just get to” breakdown I’ve used often in endurance racing, but it helps. When all you have is yourself out there to keep your head in the game, you have to break it down however you need to. A simple, motivational saying on repeat is sometimes all it takes to get out of bed in the morning to get yourself to the gym or to push yourself through another mile on the treadmill. Keep MOVING forward to see the numbers go by, even when your body and mind sometimes want to throw in the towel. One day at a time and eventually you will see results. What’s YOUR mantra to keep you going? What’s your one-liner of the hour, day, month, or the year?

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About the Author Jess Tuttle is an NASM Certified Personal Trainer at the Ridge Athletic Clubs.

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