November 17 2017
Five years after admitting defeat during a high school race, this runner reflects on her eating disorder recovery.
Try this mental exercise from sports psychologist JoAnn Dahlkoetter, Ph.D. to shake off thoughts that are dragging you down.
Step #1: Take a piece of paper and draw a vertical line down the center.
Step #2: Think of all the negative thoughts you have about yourself and your running – I’m too slow to run that race, I’m not strong enough to try that workout – and write them on the left-hand side of the page.
Step #3: Look at the first negative sentence and ask yourself, “How can I coach myself through that?” One the right-hand side, write down a positive way to think about that fear. If you’re afraid you’re too slow, write, “There are runners of all abilities and I get faster every day.”
Step #4: Continue pairing every negative thought with a positive one until you’ve finished the list. You’ll immediately feel better. Save this paper to look at whenever doubts creep in.