Welcome to part three of the ultra running inspiration series. Let’s begin…
Self-limiting beliefs are a big part of the ultra running experience. Overcoming these barriers is what makes the finish line possible.
We develop patterns of thinking from our family, friends, society, entertainment, and the news.
In fact, we experience limitations in all that we do. And when we overcome one, the next one manifests. A new outer wall of what’s possible stands between your present reality and the finish line of your dreams.
Now don’t get me wrong, all self-limiting beliefs are not bad. In fact, we all have them and even need limitations in some capacity.
If completely absent, we’d be galavanting through the infinite realm of relativity. We then spin wheels instead of progressing towards a goal. Duality defines the edges of our objective life experience.
But understand that what helps us in one stage of life may be harmful in the next.
Two Halves of Life
Carl Jung, a famous Swiss psychiatrist and psychoanalyst who founded analytical psychology, explains it well. He states, “The first half of life is devoted to forming a healthy ego, the second half is going inward and letting go of it.”
I know this from experience. The risks I took earlier in life would be less wise today. Scaling my distance to very long ultramarathons was a 7-year hero’s journey.
Although this can be accomplished through different approaches, my mindset when crossing my first 200-mile distance was do-or-die. Today I have a wife and three children at home. I’m more cautious.
Death and Resurrection
We transgress through life, experiencing many small deaths and rebirths. Transcending limitations and experiencing such awakenings requires humility. You also need some inner and outer authority.
It’s a Divine process. Thomas Kempis, a Renaissance Roman Catholic monk and author of The Imitation of Christ, offers valuable words. He said: “Realize that you must lead a dying life; the more a man dies to himself, the more he begins to live unto God.”
Most of the time, because we hold them so tightly, we don’t realize our self-limiting beliefs. Our near-sightedness blinds us from the bigger picture.
But there’s an infinite well of wonder and abundance from within. When you align with this reality from the inside, you begin to experience it on the outside.
This dwelling place is our infinite potential. It’s not something you reach, but instead, something you align with.
Limitations dwell deeply in the mind. When you let them go, the distance becomes very possible. It also frees space to diligently follow a training program.
Remember, we can’t hold something new if we are grasping tightly onto something old.
When you realize these things, your endurance begins to grow. Your beliefs are the seeds. Look at an acorn and see the forest. Your next finish line happens in the mind first, and your body follows.
The power is within you, and your journey is not to the finish line; it’s to overcome the limiting beliefs that get in the way.
This is part three of a series on ultra running inspiration. Click here to read part one: Ultra Running Inspiration: Growth, Progress, and Transcedence. Click here to read part two: Ultra Running Inspiration: How To Transform Your Running. Thank you for reading and enjoy the journey!
By the way, if you align with this mindful approach to running an ultramarathon, then check out my book. It’s called Mindful Ultramarathon Running: Training To Run Longer, Stronger, and Faster With Less Effort. Programs included: 50k, 50-mile, 100k, 100-mile, and 200-mile distances.