Have you ever wondered what it is that allows marathon runners to achieve not only running one 26.2 mile race after another, but also achieve so many other large goals in their life along the way?
It’s almost a rule of thumb that if you’re a marathon runner, you’re also a high achieving individual. They seem to have a very high correlation.
I’m not saying you have to start running marathons to achieve your lifelong goals, but if you can get yourself into the Marathon Mindset, you’ll have a much easier time doing so.
Let’s take a dive into the mind of a marathon runner and explore how you can do that.
The Marathon Mindset
1.) Long Term Mindset – First, marathon runners have a long-term mindset. They understand that their goal of running 26.2 miles isn’t going to happen all at once. It’s going to take a while to achieve, and they’re ok with that. They have the ability to see a large goal and believe that, if they put enough effort and time into it, there is no reason they cannot achieve that goal. And that’s huge.
Knowing, understanding, and accepting that something is a long-term endeavor helps to take the pressure off of the achievement, which allows you to then focus on the tasks at hand.
2.) Break Down Large Goals – Second, they know that 26.2 miles is a long way to run, for some, longer than they’ve ever run before. But they don’t let this get to them. They know they’ve ran shorter distances before without a problem, and they had to work up to that point, so there is no reason they can’t work up to running a full marathon, as long as they break down the large goal into smaller, more achievable goals along the way.
3.) Easily See Achievable Tasks – And they then see that 26.2 miles as not a full marathon, but a set of smaller, easily achievable distances. Maybe it’s two half-marathons. Maybe its four quarter-marathons. Maybe it’s a mile at a time. Whatever the task breakdown is, marathon runners don’t get mentally overwhelmed by the full distance.
They have the ability to easily see the race in small achievable chunks. This makes the achievement more mentally bearable, and allows them to focus on just running.
4.) Training – When setting that initial goal to run a marathon, the runner knows they’re not going to be able to do it immediately. They recognize that they’re going to need some training. They need to build up their stamina, work on their form, learn to breathe correctly, and all of the other things that come with running a marathon.
And they’re fine with that. They don’t make the excuse of not being equipped to achieve their goal. They know they’ve got some work to do, and they accept that. Then they get down to business to improve themselves to the point where they can run that marathon.
The same is true for any large achievement. You’re no doubt going to have to learn some new skills to achieve your lifelong goals. You can’t let that hold you back. Recognize what those things are, and get yourself the proper training to learn what you need to learn.
5.) Action and Follow-through – Taking action and following through is the final thing marathon runners do very well. This is where the mindset trumps all. The pressure is off because they’ve taken a long-term task-based approach to their goal. They’ve broken it down into easily achievable tasks, and they’ve gone through the proper training to be able to accomplish their goal.
Now when race day comes, the achievement is just a formality, and the final icing on the cake. The work is done in the preparation and the mindset.
Any large achievement is going to be 80% or more about getting yourself in the proper mindset.
Notice that I mentioned very little about the physical nature of marathon runners. Ask any runner what the most challenging aspect of running a marathon is and they’ll tell you it’s the battle between their ears.
That’s why getting in the right mindset is so crucial to them.
And it’s crucial to you as well. For any large achievement, as long as you have the right mindset, there is no reason you can’t achieve your goal.
Let me know in the comments below what your lifelong goal is that you want to achieve, as well as a few of your broken down steps to be able to achieve that goal.