Everyone has to start somewhere when training for a marathon…
In traditional marathon training, you focus heavily on your physical stamina. You progress upwards from the 5k, to the 10k, and then the half-marathon. And if you are confident enough, you sign up for your first marathon.
And there’s nothing wrong with this approach. Yes, it can get the job done. However, most will run into marathon preventing issues along the way.
That’s because if you only focus on the physical, you’re missing the most potent ingredient of all. You are missing the MENTAL side of training.
Personally, building my mental strength is how I went from running a few miles on a treadmill to jumping right to my first marathon. Yes, I trained my body intensely, but I put a HEAVY emphasis on building my mental strength as well.
By developing mental strength, your mind will guide your body forward.
Conversely, if you focus solely on physical training, you become vulnerable to mental blocks and limitations. Here’s where most end up lost in the details of training, suffer from an injury, or burn themselves out. And maybe worst of all, they become COMFORTABLE at running shorter distances.
As a runner, COMFORT…similar to kryptonite to Superman, will block your abilities. It will prevent you from reaching a further distance. Comfort will prevent you from running a marathon.
You must embrace the struggle and look beyond the pain. Start to see being uncomfortable as a signal of growth, not lack. The struggle is a part of the process. You must stress before you can grow. Just like the muscles of a bodybuilder, you expand by demand.
That’s where developing your mental strength comes in. It helps you see marathon training from a new light. Running a marathon is not some impossible feat designed for elite runners. It’s for runners like you who want to push the limits of everyday life.
Because everything you could ever want, whether in your running or life, patiently waits right outside your comfort zone.
And if you keep moving forward and run a marathon, you experience something special. …something EXTRAORDINARY.
Running a marathon will not just provide an unwavering amount of physical fitness. But it will completely TRANSFORM your mind.
Crossing the finish line of a 26.2 mile race will reshape your life.
Yes, it improves the obvious like your endurance and power. But it also enhances the not so obvious, like your confidence and mental stamina.
I can tell you from experience…
After running my first marathon, I went on to run more marathons. I then jumped into the ultramarathon world. I ran 50ks, 50 miles, 100ks, 100-miles and even longer. I also ran a grueling 200-mile race.
And guess what?
I don’t plan on stopping there.
But even after the many finish lines I’ve crossed, I’ll never forget the final stretch of my first marathon. It was mind-blowing. The final stretch of my first marathon is where the magic happened.
And you know what?
It’s where the magic will happen for you.
I can still see it in my mind…
The Final Stretch
The marathon finish line was faintly visible in the distance. It didn’t make sense at the time, how “someone like me” could finish a marathon. I even began developing self-sabotaging thoughts. And the same self-sabotaging thinking also affected my body.
It was strange, but every step forward felt like two steps backward. I felt stuck inside a pit of marathon mental quicksand, and I was struggling to find a way out.
My brain could not comprehend what my eyes were witnessing. It began to short circuit! I could have sworn smoke was puffing out my ears!
Okay. So, maybe the smoke was a hallucination. Okay…the smoke was definitely a hallucination. But you get the point.
It was similar to a weak leg dream. You know…when you are being chased, but you can’t pick up speed. No matter how much effort you give, you can’t gain momentum. And every steps makes your legs heavier than the last.
That’s precisely how the final stretch of my first marathon felt.
But if you dig deep enough within yourself to push through the resistance you then experience an incredible phenomenon…
It’s rather spectacular.
You see, once your brain starts accepting the impossible is possible, the dynamics change entirely. Suddenly, you don’t just run to the finish line…you GRAVITATE towards it! And then you cross the finish line and here’s where you experience a paradigm shift.
The finish line of your first marathon is like a metaphorical warm hole to a new dimension…to your new life.
When you cross that line, you begin to understand the only barrier that held you back was your limiting beliefs.
You begin to understand that the only barrier that EVER holds you back is your limiting beliefs.
Because through adaptation, steady progress, and patience…ANYTHING is possible. Even running a marathon.
And it all begins with your thoughts…
Developing A Marathon Mindset
Never forget that the strength of your mind is beyond comprehension. Your thoughts are POWERFUL. Your thoughts shape your reality.
Understand this: what you think on a regular basis magnifies in your subconscious. And if you hold onto a thought long enough in your conscious mind, it turns into a belief that enters your subconscious.
Now….it’s the shape of your life. It’s what you perceive as your reality.
Better put, thoughts are the cause, and circumstances are the effect. Your external world is a direct reflection of your internal world.
So, what’s the problem with your thoughts turning into beliefs when it comes to marathon training?
Well, there is no problem if you can observe them. The key is to make your thoughts self-fulfilling instead of self-limiting. But unfortunately, most of our thoughts are naturally negative.
Here are some numbers that may shock you…
Did you know that we have between 50,000 – 70,000 thoughts per day?
I know…human beings do A LOT of thinking. So, don’t worry…you’re not alone.
And this level of excessive thinking wouldn’t be a bad thing if we didn’t naturally think so negatively.
You see, for the average person, 80% of those 50,000-70,00 thoughts per day are NEGATIVE!
I know, pretty scary…but wait, it gets worse.
Here’s what’s most alarming—98% of our thoughts are recycled from the day prior!
So not only are we unconsciously recycling our thoughts for years, but the majority of them are NEGATIVE!
70,000 thoughts x 80% negativity = 56,000 negative thoughts!
No wonder 75% of the world’s population reports to experience moderate to high levels of stress on a daily basis. We are not exactly setting ourselves up for success.
But you know what?
I don’t see 56,000 negative thoughts, I see 56,000 thoughts of opportunity.
Do you see the possibilities? The opportunity? The potential?
Think about what could happen if you flip a portion of those negative thoughts into positive ones. Consider how much YOU would change. Consider how much the WORLD would change.
Now circle back and think about what your chances would be NOW at finishing a marathon…
That’s why running a marathon can be so hard for so many people. Not because it’s difficult physically, although it will challenge your physical body. But the mental side, if not trained, will demolish most marathon goals before they even begin.
Think about it…
If every time you consider running a marathon you think, “I’m not a marathon runner,” how could you ever begin?
Or if you think “I could never run 26.2 miles,” how could you ever finish a training program?
And if you think these negative thoughts enough, they begin to spin in your mind. Remember…98% of our thoughts are recycled from the day before. If you don’t start believing in yourself, good luck even putting on running shoes.
You’ll talk yourself out of it every time. If you stay in your head, you are dead.
In this way, you are adding more resistance to your marathon then is required. Compare it to the physical side, and it’s like making the hills higher than they need to be.
Or it’s like racing your first marathon and running around the block 100 times before starting the race.
Why add any extra resistance? Isn’t 26.2 miles enough for your first marathon?
You wouldn’t do it physically, so why do it mentally? Why make your mental hills the size of Mt. Everest when other runners are sprinting schoolyard hills?
And if those negative thought loops remain unchanged for long enough, and they turn into limited beliefs, those beliefs eventually become concrete. Here’s where people don’t even consider running a marathon.
But don’t worry. If you are reading this, then you are not there yet. And I’m going to help make sure you NEVER get there.
So we will start by pulling out the weeds and planting acorns that grow into oak trees. That is, we will begin by eliminating negative thoughts in your running and replacing them with positive self-empowering thoughts.
Because here’s the fact—if you think running a marathon is only for incredible athletes, then you are mistaken. ANYONE can run a marathon if they are hungry enough to succeed.
I won’t even bring up the man who is over 100 years old who runs marathons…
Okay, I just brought him up…
Yes, it’s true, and there are runner’s in their 70’s crushing world records. The marathon is a distance, not a unicorn. Crossing the finish line is not some impossible feat, it’s an outcome to a process you follow and a mindset you develop.
And don’t worry, I will offer you the physical training part of the process… but first, let’s take care of the mental part.
Here’s the good news: If you are the one who created your limiting beliefs, then you are the one who can change them.
All that’s required is a directed awareness. When you see a negative belief, acknowledge it, and replace it with a positive one.
So wouldn’t RIGHT NOW be a good time to start?
If you answered YES, then read below for 26.2 new beliefs in quote form. You can use each to help you run your first marathon or improve it.
Some version of the following quotes are in my new book ‘The BASIC Marathon Guide: A Beginner-Friendly Program To Running Your First Marathon.’ And this book contains the physical part of the process. That is, inside the pages, you will find…
–A simple approach to marathon running. No more over-complicating the process.
–An easy-to-follow training program. If you are human then you can finish it.
–26.2 expert training tips to transform you into a marathon runner before the race.
–26.2 expert racing tips to get your across the finish line in one piece.
–The secrets to developing a marathon mindset.
–And much MUCH more…
Overall, the book is short read and is packed with an AVALANCHE of motivation along with practical tips for running your first marathon.
You see, I learned something critical from running a few miles on a treadmill, to running marathons, to ultramarathons, to crossing the finish line of one of the longest races in the world (200 miles).
What I learned is this: runners completely over-complicate the process of running a new distance.
Okay, so now that you have the physical process in place. Let’s take care of the mental side RIGHT NOW.
Let’s start with developing a marathon mindset and read the 26.2 marathon quotes below. And no way do I only list the quote. After each quote, I explain how to apply it to your training or racing and then provide a practical tip so you can start using it TODAY.
Here we go, let’s begin with believing in yourself…
26.2 Marathon Quotes For Developing A Marathon Mindset
Marathon Quotes #1
“When you believe in your abilities, you can run ANY distance, including the marathon distance you once believed was impossible.”
Before you begin training, you must BELIEVE in your abilities. Have ABSOLUTE certainty that you can run a marathon.
Any degree of uncertainty will stop you dead in your tracks.
Don’t focus on being “more confident.” That’s an empty seed. Practice being more CERTAIN. Having certainty will cause you to TAKE ACTION. By taking more action you will naturally increase your confidence.
And with enough confidence, meaning, faith in your abilities, you can accomplish just about anything.
Remember—you’re a human being. And perhaps the genius of the human animal is our adaptation response. By applying stress, we break down, heal, and grow back stronger so we can meet new demands.
And that’s the EXACT essence of marathon training. You progressively increase your mileage each week as you morph into a marathon runner.
So in that way, your body is designed for marathon training…and I’m CERTAIN of that.
TIP: ‘Certainty’ can be developed like a muscle. So practice using it in different aspects of your life. And when it comes to running a marathon be ABSOLUTELY CERTAIN, do not give yourself a way out.
Marathon Quotes #2
“On marathon race day you must not only run past the limits of your body, but you must run past the limits of your mind.”
Your mind is a muscle too.
The metaphorical physical mountain of a marathon is a steep climb. But it’s a schoolyard hill compared to the monstrous mountain in your mind.
Fortunately, though, you’re taking a chop at the monsters legs by reading these quotes. The mind is the most powerful tool you have. Change your mind, and you will change your life, starting with crossing the finish line of a marathon.
For me, the marathon was the first race I ever ran. It took an enormous shift in my thought process to get it done. Now after running over 100 marathon and ultramarathon distances, I know there are no limits in the sky. The only barriers that exist are self-created in the mind.
Marathon race day will test you both physically and mentally, so workout BOTH during training.
TIP: Pick up The BASIC Marathon Guide here and start developing a marathon mindset for running long distances.
Marathon Quotes #3
“Marathon running is not only a physical challenge, but it’s a mental conquest.”
This quote circles back to the last one. However, it’s so important that it’s worth touching on it again.
Running a marathon is an extreme physical challenge. But the mental obstacles are even more taxing.
If you understand the marathon is both physical and mental, then you will be much better off. And that goes for both training and on race day.
Waking up 2 hours early to train…that takes mental strength. Walking out the door with a sore pair of legs…that takes mental strength. Tackling each training run week after week without giving up…that takes mental strength.
Preparing for a marathon is a mental journey…but it’s a journey worth taking. Know of this journey going in, and you will be well ahead of the rest.
TIP: Condition your mind by practicing mental imagery. The brain doesn’t know the difference between your thoughts and reality. So if you visualize crossing the finish line, you have already begun eliminating your limiting beliefs. Start your visualization practice TODAY.
Marathon Quotes #4
“Stay committed to your marathon goals, but flexible in your training.”
There’s an old saying that a tree that is unbending is easily broken.
So how does this relate to marathon training?
Well, if you strive for perfection and miss a day you may “break,” that is, you may quit. But if you are FLEXIBLE, then you have a much better chance at following through to race day.
The fact is if you skip a training run you will still be sufficiently trained to run a marathon. Just don’t make it a habit.
In life, you get the good and the bad. Times can get hectic. And some days our schedules change unwillingly.
But regardless of where life detours you, don’t let a missed training run turn into a missed marathon. Be FLEXIBLE.
TIP: Understand what failure really is. Although I don’t like to use the term, “FAILURE” is not a word to tell you who you are, it’s to inform you about a way that doesn’t work. It’s to educate you and to test you to see how bad you really want it. So don’t see a missed training run as a failure, see it as a change in your plans. And be sure to take corrective action, so you don’t miss one again.
Marathon Quotes #5
“If you train the same way you’ve always trained, you will reach the distances you’ve always reached.”
When we first start marathon training, for most people, we struggle with finding the extra time. But if you keep looking for time in the same places, you will never find more time. That’s because if you train the same way you’ve always trained, you will reach the distances you’ve always reached.
Here’s the truth: if you are FULLY committed to running your first marathon, then you WILL run your first marathon. And time will never be an obstacle. There is ALWAYS time to train. 8:00pm to 8:00 am is enough time to reach ALL your running goals.
TIP: Lay out all your running clothes the night before. Fall asleep for a few hours, wake up extra early, and train. Then the following night, go to bed early if you want to catch up on sleep. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve woke up at 3:00 am on the weekend or before work to run a 20 or longer mile run. Just wake up, get dressed, and MOVE.
Marathon Quotes #6
“Sometimes, the hardest part isn’t the mileage of your marathon training run. Sometimes, what’s most challenging is the distance from your bed to the door.”
Hesitation has the potential to cripple your training. But once you get moving, you feel much better.
How many times have you felt incredible in the middle of a run?
Once our body warms up and is moving, our thoughts begin to change. Most of the time, you can’t imagine why you didn’t want to run in the first place.
But the most difficult part is actually getting to that moment. That’s why what’s most challenging for some is not the actual run itself. What takes the most effort is dragging yourself out of bed and out the door.
So wake up and don’t think…JUST MOVE!
TIP: If you repeat an action for 21 days in a row it becomes a habit. So, for 21 days jump out of bed the moment you wake up. No snooze but, no social media, no second thoughts. Just open your eyes and jump out of bed.
After a while, you will feel pulled to wake up and run. It won’t feel like you are pushing anymore. And on training days make sure your running shoes are next to your bed. Wake up, throw them right on, and get moving.
Marathon Quotes #7
“When you’re in a state of pure gratification, you can only feel great, and that’s the difference between getting out of bed to hesitate, or waking up to train for a marathon.”
Circling back to the last quote, another way to combat hesitation is to practice gratitude. Make it a morning ritual.
When you are grateful, it’s impossible to feel bad. And in a sport where being uncomfortable is a guarantee…gratitude will help you along the way.
In life, we can sometimes feel unfulfilled. You know, a feeling of emptiness. Well, that’s where being grateful comes in. When you are grateful, then what you have is enough…who you are is enough…the world is enough.
Do you see what happens?
The empty hole begins to fill.
When you focus on what you WANT, rather than what you HAVE, you feel like something is always lacking or empty. Similar to a hole. But when you are grateful for what you have, there is no hole, that is, you feel as if NOTHING is missing.
Now you don’t feel empty or unfulfilled.
If you practice gratitude on a regular basis, then your motivation to run will last a lifetime. Now wake up and train and tell me how you feel!
TIP: Meditate before you run. Breath deep and focus on 3 things you are grateful for. Spend a few minutes on each one separately. Be grateful for the people in your life, your fingers & toes, health, love, nature, whatever brings you joy. Be grateful for how your heart beats all day every day without effort. That’s enough to change your mood drastically. What a gift your heart is.
Sometimes it’s tough to get going with appreciation and gratitude. But once you reach a grateful state, appreciation pours out like an untapped faucet. For example, to break out of the typical morning “what if” thoughts, I focus on my two boys and their big bright smiles. I picture them laughing and saying “Daddy.” From there…my gratitude flows in abundance.
Marathon Quotes #8
“If you put one foot in front of the other, one way or another, you will cross the finish line of your first marathon.”
Try to avoid over-complicating the process of running a marathon. Keep the process simple. If you put one foot in front of the other, one way or another, you will make it to race day.
That’s why I say that running can be so much more than moving your feet forward. Or it can be just that, moving your feet forward.
When you think about it, that’s all running really is, moving your feet forward. It’s controlled falling.
But for some, when we first begin training for a marathon, we over-complicate things. But the fact is that running a marathon is simple. No, not EASY, it’s SIMPLE. When you think about it, there’s not all that much to it.
There is literally a clear paved path from beginning to end, and all you have to do is move your feet forward.
Yes, there are challenges like fueling and chaffing that you overcome and learn from. But even during your most significant moments of adversity, if you keep moving your feet forward EVENTUALLY the finish line will come…it always does.
TIP: Practice running in the present moment. To do so, focus on your breathing and your five senses. Or keep running towards the next spot 10 feet ahead. And when your mind drifts, observe your thoughts. Don’t get lost in them.
When you run in the present moment, every mile is the same mile. And if you keep moving your feet forward the finish line will come…it always does..and in that sense…it already has…and it already is…
Marathon Quotes #9
“The key to building endurance for a marathon is patience. Our bodies need time to rebuild and grow. Work hard, run smart, and be patient.”
Our bodies break down, adapt, and grow. It’s a progressive process, and it takes time. If you run too hard too soon, you could find yourself in trouble. Not only will you become incredibly sore, but you increase your chance of injury. Rushing can lead to injury and injury can lead to giving up on your training.
The key to endurance is patience. Our bodies need time to rebuild and grow. If you RUN RUN RUN then you will only STRESS STRESS STRESS. There is no room to heal and grow.
Always remember that endurance is never gained during the act of running. You gain endurance while recovering. And always remember that distance will come over time, but if you rush, injuries will come in no time at all.
TIP: Learn how to run ANY distance by running only ONE day per week…including the marathon distance. It’s my proven system I teach in A Runner’s Secret. Click here to grab a copy. You can learn how the entire method works, or…simply flip to a training program and begin working towards your first marathon TODAY.
Marathon Quotes #10
“Crossing the finish line of a marathon is a direct reflection of the actions you take during training.”
Similar to how our external world is the EXACT reflection of our internal word, crossing the finish line will come down to your training efforts.
Isn’t’ the honesty in running a marathon marvelous?
Just ask any truly successful person who absolutely LOVES what they do. No, not someone who is just considered “successful,” who grinds their way to a goal. I mean someone living a life of fulfillment. They will tell you that success is a MINDSET.
If you train like a marathon runner than you will become a marathon runner. It will feel like a natural occurrence.
So don’t get lost in the smoke. See your reflection in the mirror, and train like you already achieved your goal…run like you already are a marathon runner.
TIP: Write in your phone “I am so incredibly grateful now that I am a marathon runner” and save it to your home screen. Read it every time you look at your phone. And since the average person checks their phone between 50-75 times a day, you will REALLY begin to believe you are a marathon runner.
Marathon Quotes #11
“Whatever distance you believe you can run is the exact distance you will end up running.”
Did you know that at one time the four-minute mile was considered impossible?
Experts even said your heart would explode!
Fast forward in time, and now high school students can run a four-minute mile. Just wait until the two-hour marathon is broken. This impossible feat will soon become a standard goal for elite runners.
So how does an exploding heart relate to marathon training? Well, marathons are not as “impossible” as you think. And no… your heart will not explode!
Here are the facts: in the last ten years, there has been an increase of marathon finishers per year by 200,000 runners. Just like the four-minute mile, the more runners who do it, the more who believe that it’s possible. Soon the 50k will be the new marathon.
TIP: Read about runners who accomplish impossible feats. Athletes have run across the United States, through the Appalachian Trail, and across the Sahara desert. Here’s my published article with ultra running magazine on my 200-mile race. One day a marathon seemed impossible, and then…I ran 8 marathons in a row during one race. Know that any distance is possible by anyone. Just re-adjust your lens on the impossible, and suddenly, your possibilities are infinite.
Marathon Quotes #12
“Just like life, marathon running is a beautiful struggle filled with opportunities to better ourselves.”
When I first heard the saying “life is a beautiful struggle” I couldn’t help but connect with it. As an endurance runner, you naturally adopt a growth mindset. No longer is anything fixed. For example, there is never a “good runner” or a “bad runner”. As long as you are putting in the hard work, growth is always occurring.
The fact is we are either progressing or regressing in everything we do. Nothing in life is static. We are either living or dying, losing weight or gaining weight, becoming stronger or weaker. Even the bones in our bodies aren’t a fixed structure, they are living tissue. And despite their hard and solid appearance, bones constantly change throughout our lifetime.
And just like weights in a gym, the resistance, or in this case, our struggles, create growth. They break us down, we learn from them, we adapt, and we grow back stronger so we can handle more stress.
So, when training for a marathon becomes difficult…guess what?
It should be!
Appreciate the struggle. And as you run through the resistance, it will only increase your endurance. And if you work hard enough, you will become enduring enough to run a marathon.
TIP: Read up on adopting a “growth mindset.” When you see the world with a growth mindset, everything is either moving forward or moving backward. You begin to see the opportunity in EVERYTHING…even your struggles.
Marathon Quotes #13
“No one can run those 26.2 miles for you. YOU run those miles, and you alone.”
Listen up. You can read a million quotes and consider running a marathon a million times. But without the final step…the ACTION step…your dream of becoming a marathon runner will die in your mind.
Understand that thoughts are real things. Your car, your phone, your TV. Even the satellites orbiting the earth…all once were thoughts in someone’s mind.
And those thoughts would have stayed thoughts if it wasn’t for action. It was the ACTION that brought them to life.
Here’s a scary thought…
Think of all the Michael Jordan’s that died through our lifetime. The people who never leveraged their talents. Who went through life without expressing themselves. Who held other people’s opinions of themselves higher than their own.
Those scared to take a chance, to do what’s right in their heart, to follow their dreams.
Think of all those people who went through life safe. Who were afraid and didn’t dare to move forward on their aspirations.
But hey…at least they were liked by others who didn’t dream…right?
Hey, I’ve fallen down. I’ve run under my target pace. I’ve eaten a mouth full of mud. I’ve failed to reach my desired goal. I’ve got up to speak and shook with nervousness. I’ve stuttered on my words. I’ve made mistakes. I’ve suffered heartache. I’ve made bad decisions.
But you know what? After all the times I’ve fallen… You know what I do each time?
I GET BACK UP. I keep moving forward, and most importantly, I NEVER EVER GIVE UP.
So get back up, understand the only opinion that matters is your own, and keep moving forward.
If one approach doesn’t work, then try another. And if that approach doesn’t work then try another. And if the next approach doesn’t’ work, then try another…
No…someone else’s opinion of you DOES NOT have to be your reality…and YES, you can always find a way.
Do you want someone to believe in you? Well, I DO.
NO, it won’t be easy. But YES, it will be worth it.
So look past the heckler in your mind, and the hecklers out of your mind. Listen to your heart. And if something is telling you to run a marathon… then get out the door and start training. There’s no better time than RIGHT NOW.
TIP: Walk out the door RIGHT NOW and start training. Go run 3 miles come back, pick up The BASIC Marathon GUIDE, and you are already done day one of your training. Remember, you cannot overcome self-doubt from the couch, you need to stand up and take ACTION.
Marathon Quotes #14
“If you want to change your life, then you must change your story. And crossing the finish line of a marathon will do that to a person.”
Some look at running a marathon as a way to better their running. And you may be one of those runners. But the truth is finishing a marathon will do so much more. Yes, it will better your running. But you know what? It will also better your LIFE.
You see, we get stuck telling ourselves the same stories over and over again about who we are. Because that’s who we are SUPPOSE to be…right?
If you want to change your life, then you must change your story. And becoming a marathon runner will do that to a person. Crossing the finish line is not your happy ending, it’s your magnificent beginning…so get out the door and start writing your new story TODAY.
TIP: Sit down and write a new story of your new life and read it regularly. Make sure you add being an awesome marathon runner! Want to run Boston? Write it. Want to run multiple marathons per year? Write it. Want to run a marathon on the wall of China? Write it. Whatever you desire most, write it. Write a few paragraphs, read it daily, and watch your story come alive.
Marathon Quotes #15
“Focus on the thought of running a marathon. Soon that thought turns into a belief, and that belief gives you the power to begin training.”
Remember what I mentioned in the introduction?
I said: Whatever we focus on magnifies in our subconscious mind.
That means the seeds you plant today are the trees that grow tomorrow with delicious fruits.
Yes, weeds, meaning, negative thoughts, will also grow. So get rid of them. Because we all know what happens if you don’t get rid of one weed…
MORE WEEDS GROW.
So make sure to watch what you think. Say “I AM a marathon runner,” and after time, you will start taking more action to become one. That’s the difference of having no drive to train and running out the door with excitement.
TIP: Do not HOPE to run a marathon, EXPECT it. Try it…close your eyes and HOPE to run a marathon. How did you feel? Okay, now..close your eyes and EXPECT to run a marathon. Feel the difference?
Marathon Quotes #16
“Knowing is not enough, you MUST take ACTION to reach your marathon goal.”
Remember this: KNOWLEDGE is not power…knowledge with ACTION is power.
When you read something and then apply it to your life, that’s when you better your running. THAT’S when you better your LIFE.
Again…wouldn’t right NOW be a good time to start training?
TIP: Don’t just READ these quotes or just READ The BASIC Marathon Guide. Do your reading, but most importantly, TAKE ACTION NOW.
Marathon Quotes #17
“Running your first marathon starts with a decision…a decision to try.”
Do you know when running a marathon really begins?
No, it does not begin at the beginning of the race, not in the week building up to it, and not even at the start of your first training run.
So when does running a marathon actually begin?
Running a marathon begins when you make a DECISION. And in that decision is where your future is dictated.
And when I say a decision, I mean a real, SOLID decision. No “what if’s,” no partial commitments, no one foot in and one foot out. I’m talking about a clear and decisive decision to run a marathon.
If you already made that decision, then guess what? Your training has already begun.
Remember this: Partial commitments kill more marathon goals then injuries ever will.
So make a clear decision and don’t give yourself a way out.
TIP: Make a decision RIGHT NOW that you will run a marathon. That’s it. No doubts. Find a training program and get started.
Marathon Quotes #18
“Believing you can run a marathon is more than half the battle.”
For me, the marathon was the first race I ever ran. It took a leap of faith.
After training was complete, I stashed a handful of gels in my pocket, walked the starting line, and thought, “If these twenty thousand people can run a marathon then why not me?”
So why not YOU?
Believe that’s it’s possible. Have absolute certainty. Do this, and you will absolutely cross the finish line. Even if you run to the point that you must walk to the finish. Do whatever it takes to get the first one done.
TIP: Make sure you get fitted for running shoes that compliment your footstrike. They should also be supportive and comfortable. The right shoe will significantly decrease your chances of injury. When you have a RELIABLE shoe, you will feel a BIG difference when you train. This will allow you to believe in yourself even more.
Marathon Quotes #19
“Hills can be your best friend or your worst enemy…the choice is yours.”
Embrace hills…seriously…just do it. You might as well. Hills are patient and are always waiting for you.
Hills can be a great change of pace and a chance for different muscles to be activated. They can be your best friend or your worst enemy—the choice is yours.
Okay…still don’t like hills? No problem. If you don’t like hills then make them disappear.
How do you make hills disappear?
Well, think about it—if you put a pair of weights in your hands and walk uphill, what’s easier? To lunge or take quick, short steps?
It’s the latter every time.
Keeping your strides short and quick while going uphill will change the overall dynamic of your motion. Similar to shifting a bike to a lower gear, a shorter step requires more revolutions but less energy per revolution. The change in motion can feel as if you’re running on flat terrain. In this way, the hills begin to disappear, and your experience becomes much more enjoyable on race day.
TIP: Keep your strides short and quick when running uphill. The steeper the hill, the shorter your steps should be. Make up for any lost time on the downhills by letting gravity work its magic.
Marathon Quotes #20
“Reasons to quit are always available…but so are reasons to finish.”
We naturally develop excuses during training to stop us from even getting to the starting line.
You can find excuses in every situation, not just during marathon training. And just like complaining…they are addictive.
WARNING: discussing your excuses with someone else may only provide more comfort to quit before you even start.
Your friends and loved ones mean well. Unfortunately, however, it’s difficult to understand someone’s motives to run a marathon unless you’re a runner.
I’ve learned to try and recognize excuses for what they are—excuses—and keep moving forward to race day. Because there’s one thing I know for certain: if you look for excuses, you will always find them. Remember—there’s no such thing as bad weather, only bad gear!
TIP: Go through your entire day without complaining or making an excuse. If you catch yourself making an excuse, quickly correct it with an empowering thought. Your external circumstances do not create your life, you do. If you resonate with this, then you will undoubtedly get through training.
Marathon Quotes #21
“It’s a marathon, not a sprint. Slow is fast. Be the tortoise, not the hare.”
As cliché as it may sound… remember, it’s a marathon, not a sprint. So take your race easy, and your training even easier. Once you cross the finish, you will have enormous confidence in your running. That is where you can start speed training and running faster paces.
During one of my first marathons, I noticed a super-excited guy running next to me. He was smiling, waving to all the bystanders, and jumping around for many miles. I remember thinking to myself, “I hope he’s conserving some of that energy.” Up by mile 16, I saw the same super-excited guy lying flat on his back on the side of the road. He was the hare, not the tortoise, and unfortunately, he dropped out.
TIP: For your first marathon have one goal and one goal only: cross the finish line. Take it slow. Once you finish your first marathon and build your confidence, then tackle a speed goal. But first, cross the line and become a marathon runner.
Marathon Quotes #22
“The real race is against yourself. Let your internal control affect your external environment, not the other way around.”
The real race is against yourself…and always yourself. Even during a competition, you are competing against yourself.
Just take a look at the definition of “compete.” It’s not “to brutally beat your opponent to a pulp.” Remember, life’s not about ME…life is about WE.
‘Compete’ actually means “to strive for an objective.”
And if you dig deeper, you will find it’s true meaning…
The word ‘compete’ comes from the Latin word ‘competere‘ meaning to “strive together.”
So, when we compete, we strive together to reach an objective or goal.
Changes your perspective on racing, doesn’t it?
So even if you did consider competing on race day, the focus is still from within, not from without. Because in ALL situations, the real race is against yourself, it always is, and it always has been.
TIP: On race day DO NOT race against the person next to you. Focus on you, and run at a steady pace. Trying to keep up with someone next to you will only drain your energy required for the later stages of the race. Keep your eyes forward to the finish…not on the person next to you.
Marathon Quotes #23
“You will have bad days and goods days, slow runs and fast runs, tough races, and easy races. But you will only have ONE journey.”
I remember the first step I took as a new runner and my last step before finishing my first marathon. At the time, it sure seemed like a whole lot of ground to cover. Now, between training and races, I’ve run over 100 marathon and ultramarathon distances. But it’s never been about the race to finish. It’s always been about the journey to travel.
You will have bad days and good days, slow runs and fast runs, tough races and easy races. But you will only have one journey. Sure, the path may get challenging, but isn’t that true for all roads less traveled?
There are millions of finish lines in the world, but only ONE journey. That is, you only pave one path. YOUR PATH. So enjoy your journey…the one that has no end.
TIP: If you focus on where you’re headed rather than what you fear, suddenly, the road less traveled becomes a favorable place to run. So, focus on the outcome of your training…not the endless “what-if’s” recycled in your mind.
Marathon Quotes #24:
“The same wall that blocks disappointment is the same wall that blocks your triumph. The same wall the blocks failure is the same wall that blocks your success. And the same wall that blocks regret is the same wall that blocks your dreams of running a marathon.”
If you TRY then you have a chance at finishing a marathon. But if you DON’T TRY then you have NO chance at finishing a marathon.
Don’t let negative emotions like fear, disappointment, and regret, stop you. Because without risk there is no chance at experiencing the triumph of crossing the finish line. You will have to risk feeling negative emotions to obtain positive ones.
Yes, you must take a chance on yourself to finish a marathon. But if you ask me, a chance on yourself is the best bet that life has to offer.
That’s because, in life, RISK is unavoidable. It just depends on how much risk you are willing to take.
So if risk is bound to happen, if risk is unavoidable, if risk is inevitable, then shouldn’t you risk believing in yourself?
TIP: BELIEVE in others. It will come back tenfold because having positive beliefs will be your new way of thinking. It will become a habit. So don’t shortchange people for what seems like a “natural talent.” Yes, some people are naturally better than others, but to be great at anything takes HARD WORK. Just look at one of the greatest painters in history, Michelangelo. He said, “if people knew how hard I worked to get my mastery, it wouldn’t seem so wonderful at all.” And this is the guy who painted the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel!
Marathon Quotes #25
“Our enthusiasm can be a gift and a curse on race day. So be careful where you direct it.”
Race day can create enthusiasm, excitement, AND anxiety.
But you know what? They are all one and the same.
That’s because enthusiasm, excitement, AND anxiety are all aroused emotions. And by controlling them, you will have an enormous reserve of energy. But if you let them control you, you may go out the gate too fast.
Even if it doesn’t feel like you’re running above pace at the beginning of a race, chances are…you are running too fast.
Race day adrenaline also plays a role.
But trust me. Eventually, it wears off. And if you’re not careful, you could dig yourself into a race day grave. As a newcomer, being completely worn out at mile 16 with 10 miles to go is a lonely place.
So be eager, but control that energy, don’t let it control you.
TIP: Pay close attention to your pace at race start. Keep it slow no matter what your mind tells you. Race day excitement is persuasive. It can even make you feel like you can defy the laws of physics. So be careful, and take it slow.
Marathon Quotes #26
“The moment when your legs give up is the EXACT moment when your heart gives more.”
Luckily, the moment when your legs give up is the EXACT moment when your heart gives more. It tells you to run for something greater, something worth the pain and worth the struggle. It reminds you of those long months, those tiring days, and those weekend sacrifices. It reminds you how bad you want it and how bad you DESERVE it.
When running a marathon, you will experience both highs and lows. So try to ride the highs a bit longer, and climb out of the lows a bit faster.
Here’s how: enjoy and appreciate the race.
Isn’t it amazing the way your feet move? How running is a natural act of life?
Isn’t the freedom of running amazing? How you can run anywhere at any time?
What a GIFT.
So when your legs tire, dig deeper. Search for something beyond the physical…something beyond yourself. You know what that something is. The answer lies within your heart, focus on your intuition…the answer is there.
Listen closely and fall in love with the journey.
TIPS: During your training runs and on race day look for things to be grateful for. As I already mentioned, when you are GRATEFUL it’s IMPOSSIBLE to feel bad, and in a sport where being uncomfortable is a guarantee, gratitude will help you along the way.
Marathon Quotes #26.2
“Crossing the finish line of your first marathon will not only better your running…it will better your life.”
If you ask me, running a marathon has little to do with running and a lot to do with altering the entire course of your life.
For me, it was a tool for personal development.
Now don’t get me wrong, becoming a better runner and improving your health is a close second. But the real prize is in the progress. It’s in the development.
Challenges you once thought too difficult…suddenly, become just another obstacle to overcome. And instead of getting lost in the details of life, you see the bigger picture. And of course, your self-confidence will sore.
But you will have to cross the finish line to change your life…so…what are you waiting for?
TIP: Be humble, not proud.
Final Thoughts On Marathon Running
Although I’m now an ultramarathon runner, I ALWAYS find time to write about marathon running. That’s because finishing a marathon was where all my running began.
I know how special it can be.
That’s why I took the time to write this article and to write a book like The BASIC Marathon Guide.
Running has changed my life for the better, and I know it can change yours.
Yes, I’ve run many ultramarathon distances, but it all started with those 26.2 miles. I will be forever grateful for that distance.
Remember…it all starts in the mind. It all starts with replacing those limiting beliefs. See them for what they are—repetitive negative thoughts–and change them.
Don’t be a copy of the running world majority. Or of your parents. Or of your friends. Or of society.
Be a copy of yourself, of your passion, of your intuition. Because the truth is ANYONE can run ANY distance…it just takes ONE MORE step. ALWAYS take ONE MORE step.
So choose a quote or two that you resonate and apply it to your mental training. Post the quotes on your desk, or on the home screen of your phone, or frame them to a picture on your wall. Post them to your social media pages, read this page daily, and repeat them before you sleep and when you wake up.
You can change ANYTHING in your life if you change your BELIEFS. Start BELIEVING that starting TODAY.
Oh..and by the way….enjoy every moment of your new life as a marathon runner!
And if you didn’t already, grab a copy of The BASIC Marathon Guide: A Beginner Friendly Guide To Running Your First Marathon, and start training TODAY.
Remember—it contains an easy-to-follow training program for beginners and teaches you the secrets to developing a marathon mindset.
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