On the eve of a great battle… there is much to do.

There are plans to be finalized and preparations to be made. Warriors must gear up and mentally prepare for what they’re about to do. Wait… wait… this seems a little… over the top… for a fitness blog.

Is it, though?

When we’re about to take on a new phase of our journey… well… we’re no different from those warriors. Instead of swords and shields, we’re donning running shoes and a water bottle, or cross-trainers and a sweat towel. And yes, we ARE about to do battle… just in a different way. It’s wholly appropriate to hunker down and view it as such in order to get your head right for what’s to come. And that’s exactly what I’m here to talk about… I don’t know about YOU… but I’VE got something big coming this weekend…

For the full chat on this, the conversation with Katrina White, and more… check out the podcast episode on iTunes here, on Android here, or on the web player at the bottom of this post. Don’t forget to hit “subscribe”!

Sometimes the enormity of our task doesn’t occur to us.

Sometimes we get so used to what it is we’re doing… that we kind of lose sight of the bigger picture. This weekend, I’ll be going back to New Gloucester, Maine to run the Pineland Farms Trail Festival 50 Miler. A year ago, this race was my first 50 miler… my first ultramarathon. I’m pretty excited to get back there and…

Wait… I’m about to do a 50 MILE ULTRAMARATHON…crap…

Yeah… that’s the realization I had while recording episode 39 of the So THIS Is Fitness podcast. And it hit me just like that. I’m about to go do an event that ties for 2nd longest and most challenging endurance event I’ve ever doneThis is serious business. Regardless of how much of a badass I think I am… this is going to push me pretty hard… mentally, physically, physiologically… I’m gonna be out there, chugging along… one foot in front of the other… for over 10 hours. 50 miles… fifty freaking miles… Yeah, I’d say I’m about to do battle.

Perhaps it is approppriate, then, to prepare for battle, as a warrior would.

That means the total package, kids. If you’re going to battle you’ve gotta come armed to the teeth and ready to fight. In this case, I’ve gotta come prepared to fight for every mile, every inch. Mental and physical preparation have to be excellent and they are equally important. Maybe your battle is different – maybe you’re not running a race. Perhaps you’re about to join the gym… or take your currently unused gym membership seriously. Maybe you’re gonna clean up your nutrition and stop eating like a jerk (hey, call it what it is – I did for myself). Maybe you’re going to finally take on a toxic personal relationship situation… whatever it is, you’ve got to be ready. Physically and mentally. Whatever those might mean for you.

Physical preparation – your weapons, armor, and supplies.

For me, or any of us with a race or endurance event… the weapons with which we will conquer the course are simple – our shoes… our bike… our feet and legs. Our armor serves to protect us through our endeavor – specialty athletic clothing… sunglasses, sunscreen, and bug spray… our hydration vest, belt, or handheld…  We fill our pack with supplies meant to sustain us through the battle – gels, chews, chomps and food… water and electrolytes… salt tabs, bandages, headlamps and more… Just as the warrior sharpens and shines his blade, lays out his armor, and readies his supplies, so, too, do we in the days and nights before the battle. The pre-race selfies and pictures of our laid-out gear serve as a sign to all who may see or hear that we’re ready for the fight and intend to emerge victorious.

“Know thyself, know thy enemy. A thousand battles, a thousand victories.” – Sun Tzu

Just as it’s important for the warrior to mentally prepare for the rigors of battle, and just as he’s got no choice but to envision total victory… so too must we when we’re facing down something like this. When we’re about to take on a new phase in our fitness journey, we HAVE to believe it’s going to be successful. We MUST have confidence in our ability to succeed! And we simply CANNOT doubt ourselves. When we step up to the start line of the race, we must know that we can succeed, and we must allow only one possibility – total victory. Be prepared for what happens when you hit that dark place and fall into your pain cave… whether it happens at mile 2, or 20, or 80… you have to be ready for it and know how to fight your way through to the other side. Only then can you achieve victory.

Be the warrior – claim your victory.

So as you wake up on race day, keep this in the forefront of your mind. As you don your armor and wield your blade… know that victory is assured. You are prepared, you are well trained, and you will win the battle.

It’s that simple. And that’s the topic of discussion today, kids – how to handle yourself on the eve of battle. However hyperbolic that might sound. Join me for episode 39 for more. Go be a badass – crush it, and #LiveLifeLimitless.

What’s in this episode:

  • Interesting happenings at the gym
  • Life is actually pretty good right now
  • What to do when you’re about to embark on a major journey
    • including a conversation with Katrina White all about the upcoming Pineland Farms 50 Mile Ultramarathon

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