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Friday, July 30, 2010

Running - psychological preparation

Last weekend I went to a RRCA Coaching Clinic. And after 16 hours of lecture and an examination I am now an officially RRCA Certified Coach. I enjoyed the clinic and found it rewarding. I also learned quite a bit about the science, art and craft of coaching.



As part of the class materials we received Marathoning Start to Finish by Patti & Warren Finke. There is no flash to this book.  It has a lot of basic information.  But as was stressed in the clinic, many times the basics are forgotten. There is a chapter on psychological preparation. Let me share the bullet points:

TOOLS

Have a training plan
  • Long term goals
  • Short term goals
  • Strategy

Keep a training log

  • Daily plans and goals
  • Daily results
  • Comments
PRE-WORKOUT

Revisit plan and goals
  • How far 
  • How fast 
  • What is the purpose of this workout 
Plan rewards
  • For major workouts 
  • For achieving goals
Visualize workout as a positive experience (2-3minutes) 
  • Yourself exercising 
  • Your route 
  • What you feel, see, hear, smell and taste 
  • Completing as planned 
  • Any post workout reward 
DURING WORKOUT

Develop self awareness
  • Listen to body 
  • Listen to thoughts 
Develop self control
  • Generate positive thoughts and relaxation 
  • Deal with negative thoughts and tension
  • Focus on the present
  • Visualize yourself in the present

AFTER WORKOUT

Log results

Log any positive / negative influences

  • Plan means of using positives in the future
  • Plan ways to minimize negatives
Reward yourself for accomplishing major goals

I have never seen a list this thorough. I do like to plan my goals and make my plans.  I also make sure my sessions have purpose.  But have I been missing some of the quality? I have always just taken a cursory look at the workout and then immediately jumped in head first. This works most of the time. However, could I have greater success if I really read the workout, planned for the workout, thought about its purpose and then executed? Would that allow the workouts to have more quality – for the workouts to become breakthrough sessions? I have started planning my goals and making my plans. Now I need to make sure I get the maximum out of out of each workout.

3 comments:

  1. This is why I like to blog....I can throw all of the above that you listed onto virtual paper. Sometimes it comes out like spaghetti, but at least I can hash it out of my brain to reflect for the future.

    Congrats on the certification, COACH!

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  2. Congrats on the certification, and thanks for the list. I do most of these things, but I've never mapped it out like this to break down the process. Will try to adopt this going forward with my training.

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  3. This is very cool. I've actually thought about pursuing it. Were there any pre reqs that you had to complete prior to the class itself?

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