9da67347aa1af27 Mental Triathlon Beginner Toughness continued...why Athletes ChokeSo you remember the post on triathlon mental toughness and dissecting a champion triathletes brain?  Well, it’s time for more on that topic.  Not dissecting, but mental toughness…

Both modern scientists and ancient warriors have agreed that personal toughness, or resilience is closly linked to physical conditioning.  This seems strange to many people, including triathlon beginners.  Where one pursuit seems to be all in the mind, and the other seems to be all in the body, it is in fact not true.  When you race, your will races with you, and at times your will races FOR you … Cuz your damn legs sure won’t.

How do we build this undefeatable will?  Well would you believe that physical conditioning is one of the primary ways?  In this sense, triathletes are made to be tough, and training for a tri is a great pathway to toughness.  

If you remember, toughness is about achieving a sense of mental poise that we call achieving I.P.S or ideal performance state.  This would imply ideal arousal level, focus, resting of focus, and emotional control.  We need this to drown out fear of failure and our own sense of quit that offers the temptation of making our lives easier.  With every step it is offered and every turn of the pedal. 

 I.P.S is about seeing challenges as enjoyable obstacles.  Obstacles that merely make life worthy of the untamed caveman or cavelady inside of us.  I.P.S is about “bring it on” and “no fear” and “just do it” and almost every other sport product slogan ever concieved, all rolled into one!

When you learn I.P.S you can start to win.  You don’t need to be angry to push yourself past your barriers anymore, and your feet fly with the exhilaration that competition fuels us with.  Bring on the competition!  Bring on the fear, so I can squish it!  

This will carry you right up until the point where you are ready to achieve the very goal that you dream of.  The point where your fingers are almost brushing up against your dream and it’s a real possibility to grasp it.  At that point you are so very close … and without meaning to be dramatic, you are, in truth, so far…

Why!?

Because of your self image.  Because of the importance of the goal to you.  Because you’ve looked at others who have achieved that goal (your role models), and felt that they were special.  Having spent month after month admiring the accomplishments of people who have achieved what you really want, it has built the sport psychology equivalent of a brick wall in your mind.  

At the very moment that you have earned the right to compete at the level that you most desire, (and for you, in that moment, the stakes are at their highest) the malignant thoughts of Wayne and Garth creep into our subconscious with a silent scream of “We’re not worthy!”. At that point, the long list of triumphs that we’ve accumulated in coming to that point– Stop … And are followed by the most collosal CHOKE that the world of sport has ever seen.  

The spectators all mutter their armchair comments … “Good athlete, but they choke when it really matters.”  The inability of the athlete to cut the mustard can then follow him like a stigma until one day, the only place where they feel any sense of self worth is at a Star Trek convention.

Okay, maybe I’m exaggerating a little bit, but the truth is, this can be devastating.  The lesson here is that our accomplishments can only grow as large as our self esteem will allow.  If you believe that you have all the skills and athleticism to play pro hockey, but still see the NHL’ers  as members of an elite and exclusive club for superior people, I would bet that your career will not be spent in the NHL.

Give yourself permission to be as good as your role models, and give your role models permission to be as human as you are.  We are all just athletes that pour our hearts, souls, and will’s into what we do, and we accept the commendations that come with it … But not too proudly, because we know that our trophies are no more than:

Training + Heart  + Dedication over time = Success… Guaranteed… (for you anyways)

Someday I’ll share with you my choking experience, and if you want, feel free to make a comment on yours.  

…Live long and Prosper…

Remember, it isn’t CUTE to choke…
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Ever wonder if Triathletes are aliens?  

Of course you have, let us not play coy.  They are described as ultra intense, as triple A personality’s, with inhuman dedication, planet dominating levels of compete, and an other worldly level of grittiness.  Lets be serious, what would Will Smith (M.I.B) have to say about that?  …Yeah, I thought so…

So now that we agree that at least some triathletes are in fact aliens how can a mere mortal, a Triathlon Beginner learn how to compete with them?  Well that is a worthy discussion to have, isn’t it?  Let’s have it here.  It’s the heart of what this site is dedicated to.

Have you ever wanted to know everything about something?  Well, this is your chance.  This site is about giving you supreme insight into a world (that is in fact dominated by aliens) where any person with some heart, a set of lungs, a bike, a suit, some earplugs, a wetsuit, and maybe goggles, plus good shoes, and a packet of gel, oh yes, musn’t forget swim cap and water bottle… (can I stop yet??) … and a good bottle of sunscreen, along with some skivvies that don’t rub your crotch raw, can compete on equal terms (if your bike is over 8 grand) with any other Benny or Betty out there.

You see, Triathlon Beginners is a cyber world where all triathletes are equal, and where all people are equal (I might even start referring to them as peoquals), except for me of course who is far from equal because I happen to control this little cyber world… (imagine echoing peals of haunting laughter now) … 

There is so much that I will show you about — well, everything triathlon.  Specifically for today, I want to share how fun, and welcoming, and fulfilling, and body mending, participation in a triathlon can be, despite the AAA intense aliens that populate the upper echelons of the sport.  Fear not earthling, you shall be safe in this land of Tri … (did I really just say that?  My wife might just be right about how big a nerd I am … sniffle…).  

I want you to feel free to welcome all the other people (or peoquals) to this site, introduce yourself, and step into our triathlon beginner community.  I’d like to know what types of things are of interest to you, and how this website can help guide you on your pursuit of Tricomplishment.

Coming up, you will learn about me, your king (and of course your servant), my professional background in elite athlete performance (and how I intend to use this to help you), why my wife originally thought that I was cool, and absolutely everything there is to now about triathlon.  Remember that knowledge is power, power fuels success,  and success inspires positive action.  Lets move forward one leg at a time…

Oh, for all of you Cro-Magnon’s out there who are still clumsily scratching their protruding frontal lobes with one calloused knuckle, allow me to clarify … People + Equal = Peoquals.  Get it now?  Well, just keep scratching then, I’m sure that it will come to you.

Will+Smith+Movies+6 The nature of a Triathlete   for the Triathlon Beginner

 
Will Smith on cycle The nature of a Triathlete   for the Triathlon Beginner

 

Tommy Lee Jones Will Smith MIB 3 The nature of a Triathlete   for the Triathlon Beginner

 

 

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