This weekend I will be participating in my 5th Spartan race for 2019. This race is different though. Why you ask? I will be racing with my Epic Family and dozens of Epic Fitness Tribe members. Members who have never raced a 5K let alone a Spartan Sprint! It’s exciting to witness and be a part of their “first” big race.
Funny thing really, even though I have raced literally dozens of times, this race, or actually every race, I still feel anxious, nervous, hyped up! And this time there is even more at stake. I’ve trained with and trained this crew and I gotta say I am already feeling the butterflies in the pit of my stomach!
Granted I am not as nervous as I recall being at the start line of my very first race. But not even time can take the memory of that feeling from me.
As we get nervous, our hearts beat a little faster and our body temperature starts to rise. That’s our “Fight or Flight” hormones kicking in letting us know that we are about to do something outside of our comfort zone, and being out of our comfort zone can be a little scary. One thing I have learned from my racing career is it’s best to embrace the nerves!
Instead of buying into the fear of our nerves and our body’s reaction to them, I practice reminding myself that something (potentially) awesome is about to take place. Try these tricks that help stop me from overthinking and take the experience from gasp to GREAT! Just remember, this too takes practice, so don’t be so hard on yourself in the beginning.
Trick #1 “BE POSITIVE!”
Let me say that again, BE POSITIVE! Don’t focus on all the things that could go wrong. Instead do the exact opposite. Think about all the stuff that could be great. Positivity will breed confidence and confidence will calm the nerves.
Trick #2 “Set some goals!”
Don’t focus on the finish or end product, unless that is your way to stay positive. Rather, set small goals to complete. These small goals will get you closer to the finish. Accomplishing a series of small goals will create a sense of “I can do this!” no matter what is making you nervous.
Trick #3 “Nervous PEE!”
Yes, you read it right. When nervous our bladders feel like they are going to explode. Go satisfy that bodily function and while you are doing it, try to relax! ☺
Trick #4 “Exercise.”
This wouldn’t be much of a health and wellness site if the trainer/author didn’t mention exercise. Exercise releases endorphins that cause that euphoric feeling. This feeling lasts throughout the day and can help calm those nerves. In my case where the race is exercise, my warm-up always helps get me centered.
Trick #5 “Use your support system!”
An awesome person is an awesome person. But a group of awesome people coming together forms something RAD! All awesome people get nervous, but it is how we battle through that separates us. Try to remind yourself that you’re not the only one. Use your support system of family, friends, and loved ones. OWN being RAD and you’ll breeze through the “nerve” battle.
When those nerves hit (and they will), we start to sweat and get a little uncomfortable. STOP. Take a deep breath. Embrace the feeling and relax. Try some of these tricks and go forward. Be confident, kick-ass, and try to have some fun. Either way, I am sure you’ll end up with one great story no matter the outcome.
Top 5: My All-time nerve wracking situations.
- Getting my license
- Going away to college
- Every SINGLE 1st date
- Making the move to California
Final thought. Make your own Top 5 Nerve Wracking List. Then take a moment and look at how far you’ve come.
Every. Single. Time. You embraced the nerves. Talk about a confidence builder.
It’s safe to say, “You got this”. See y’all Saturday at EPIC Fitness takes OVER Spartan Saturday and Sunday. AROO!
Coach Tyler Gosley