5 Mantras for Runners
Mantras are a wonderful way to keep you in check and maintain a positive outlook on life. Although they are most commonly used within the yoga community, anyone can practice mantras on a daily basis. From stress and lack of sleep to living consciously, there is a mantra for just about any situation. As an athlete, I find it imperative to incorporate mantras into my workout routine for improved performance and better results. Whether you’re just hitting the pavement for fun, trying to beat that PR or getting in the mindset for race day, mantras are an excellent tool for your run flow. So here are five simple mantras for every type of runner to use before, during and after a run.
+ I am strong: Running is a challenging sport and there are times when you reach a point during a run where you feel a complete loss of energy. When you feel weak and ready to give up, repeat, “I am strong”, to yourself until it sinks in and you actually feel strong. Sometimes you just need that little 'pick me up' to keep moving. Telling yourself that you are strong is also a great aid to feeling confident about your stride and motivated to go the extra mile. Need a stronger boost to get you through? Try a gel pack by Gu or Nuun electrolyte tabs for lasting endurance.
Always be mindful of how your body is feeling. Fatigue may be a sign that you physically need time to rest, are dehydrated or injured.
+ I am fast: Running doesn’t have to be a speedy sport. If anything it’s a personal experience which means going at your own pace is “A-O-K”. Be proud of your time no matter what it is after all, you worked so hard to achieve it. Whether you run a mile in 4 minutes or 12, you are fast. According to Statista there were approximately 60 million people in the United States participating in running events in 2017. With an overall population of approximately 326 million, that makes runners here in the U.S.A only 18% of the population. Instead of comparing yourself to other runners, focus on your own speed. By the way, you're already faster than 82% of the United States. As a bonus you might even find that this mantra increases your speed for a more optimal time!
+ I am healthy: With every step you take, both your physical and mental health are benefitting from running. Studies have linked running to optimal cardiovascular health, stronger hearts, prevention of numerous diseases and an excellent resource for weight loss. Running not only improves your physical health, it’s also a key factor in stabilizing your mental health. By increasing endorphins, the sport of running has proven to decrease symptoms of depression, anxiety and overall stress. Practicing mindfulness through running also aids mental clarity and productivity. As Kevin Hart once said in an interview with Time, “I grew very fond of it because it was something that I was able to use as a meditating technique…It was just a place for me to go and think and be productive in a mental setting”. So make the most out of your runs and what they can do for your physical and mental health. You deserve to live your best life! Just remember:
“A mantra a day keeps the doctor away”-Upward Yoni.
Struggling with mental health issues and want to learn more on how running can help? Check out, Outrun the Dark for more information and support; you can even join them on Strava, a popular running app!
+ I am a winner: One of the best mantras for your mental health as a runner is this, “I am a winner”. It doesn’t matter if you’re winning the gold at the Olympics or crossing the finish line of your first 5K, you’re a winner. Every last mile, 400-yard sprint or marathon you achieve is a major accomplishment and you should be proud of reaching each milestone, personal record, and goal you set for yourself. It’s also important to remember that “winning” doesn’t always involve speed. If you’re getting out of the bed in the morning and committing to a run, that’s a win! Find the small details about your personal runs that are personal wins. For example, recognizing that you took time out of your busy schedule to run is a personal gain; you made time for YOU and that is a win-win situation!
+ I am well rested: Rest and recovery are key elements in the sport of running. Without taking a break, you not only increase your risk of injury, you risk the opportunity to improve your performance. Really tuning in to this mantra encourages you to be more aware of how you are feeling. By listening to your body and gaining the rest you need, you’re being mindful of your body’s limits, preparing for the next long run and avoiding overload. This mantra is not only great for runners, it’s the mantra we all need to get through each day of our very busy lives. Remember, it’s okay to rest. You deserve it! Need help tracking your recovery time after each workout? Garmin watches feature a recovery advisory after each workout so that you’re always aware of the amount of rest you need.
For more information on rest & recovery, wellness and living a healthy lifestyle, stay tuned @upwardyoni and look out for future blog posts!