I don’t practice any mindset techniques as such, however I’ve always been competitive and my background in track athletics taught me good discipline, motivation and resilience.
I competed to a relatively decent level in track when I was 11 years through to the age of 24. Starting in 200m, 300m and then progressed on to 400m. I trained 5 times per week - 3 track days, 2 gym days. I was used to the long sessions around 2 hours packed with drills, speed and pace work. I always missed having something to dedicate to since moving away from athletics so I guess when I started CrossFit in my early thirties I was ready to refocus my energy into another sport.
What I think about prior to exercise?
It’s a tough and very competitive sport; I enjoy the variety and challenges it brings. It doesn’t always go well or not always enjoyable but I still love it. I train on my own a lot of the time sometimes its hard to push through when you don’t feel like it.
I try to take each session at a time and remember why I’m doing it, whether I’m tired, demotivated, it’s a hard workout or maybe movements I’m not good at. Every session is an opportunity to improve and that’s when the extra 5% is made.
What I think about during workout?
I try imaging competitors picking up the bar when I don’t want to or say to myself ‘somebody else is putting the work in when you don’t want to so move’.
Give myself little challenges within workouts such as doing a certain amount of reps unbroken or try to limit rest by looking at the clock and only allowing a set time before moving on again. Where I can I drag my friends or coaches at the box into workouts to push me they will change the reps/load or time frame for me to push and try moving with them or catching them which works well. Its tough but great push!
I focus on my breathing and stick to my pacing which I usually think about prior to and during workouts.
What I think afterwards?
I like to evaluate my performance whether that is mentally or go back and look at videos I took. I look at efficiency in movements – could technique be improved, anything to tweak? Transitions – could I move faster, less breaks? Pacing or sets/reps done – is there another way I could have done the workout faster?
I had been through some tough times as a young adult in my personal life and can push through adversity. My motivation for pushing is doing it for my dad who passed away when I was 19 years.
Occasionally I will read books or listen to podcasts to help me - I’ve read Mat Frasers HWPO there are some great tips in there, recently listened to a podcast Chris Hoy did on High Performance which was really interesting.