One CONSISTENT Skill Behind 118 100-Mile Finishes

(Photo: The excellent John Stewy)

(Photo: The excellent John Stewy)

A client of mine wanted to run a tough, technical, 100-mile race.

This one was her big dream.

She’d only done one 100, so doing an easier one several months ahead seemed like an obvious confidence-booster.

Except a recurring injury cropped up and she had to drop.

And she had a frustrating job change.

Then series of disappointing results at shorter races.

Then, as she needed to ramp up for the Big Race, she lost her drive.

After years of dreaming a year working toward it, the Big Race was finally near. And she wondered why she should even show up at the starting line. 

One of the reasons we run ultras is the thrill of seeing what's possible - what we and these bodies of ours can really do.

So dreaming big comes naturally to us. We know the guts it takes to click “Enter,” and the rush of scare-citement that follows.

The catch is when you aim big like we do, you create a glaring gap between you and the Big Race you want to do.

Your mind seizes that gap to stir up fear. The last thing it wants you to do is a big, scary, unpredictable feat with decent potential for failure (i.e, a 100-mile race).

Which is why you start noticing all kinds of evidence that you can’t do it. DNFs, draining job changes, disappointing race results, lost motivation… Your unsupervised mind loves ease and predictability - it isn’t the most objective news channel. It’s easy to look at the disappointing story it's telling and think, “why bother showing up?”

I happen to believe we’re given dreams like this for a reason, so I’m sharing a simple but powerful skill I've used in every single 100 I’ve ever run. It’s definitely one of the ways I’ve finished 118 of them so far.

Believe in yourself...relentlessly.

Believe you can, despite all current evidence to the contrary. 

If you’re thinking “wait, believing hasn’t worked for me,” don’t give up hope. It’s not a mysterious force that either happens or doesn’t- it’s a skill. 

A skill anyone can develop.

See your Big Race as possible and real - how would you think and act?

Practice that as often and with as much determination as you do those training miles.

You’ll forget (we all do). It’s ok. Just keep re-believing and taking action to back it up.

Relentlessly, no matter what.

Understand that you’ll have to stay committed to your belief because it will absolutely, positively, without a doubt be tested by “reality” like injuries, slowness, naysayers, and all manner of obstacles.

It may also feel awkward trying to believe something big before you see the evidence for it (we’re not using to training our minds!), so if you want help, message or email me. I love coaching this because it because I’ve lived it and know it works.

Take it from me and my client - she believed in her chances, in spite of it all, and not only showed up but finished faster than expected. I’m so proud of her!

Like her, you have big things to do. You can’t afford to wait for something or someone to convince you it’s ok to believe your dream is possile, or you’ll stay where you are.

You have to believe now, before it’s easy. 

It’s no coincidence that we finish 100-mile races by relentless forward progress. We just need the relentless self-belief to make that happen.

Susan Donnelly’s signature

PS - As I mentioned, I love coaching on this, especially before a big race and I've got an easy, new offer to help - a 3.5-hour session Race Rescue package. I'm offering a limited-time introductory offer and have one opening left.

Sign up here or email me here to set up a free consult call with me to see if it's right for you!

Susan Donnelly