Madden on Excellence: Mental Excellence - The Forgotten Fitness from Within

What goes into a display of mastery? Why do some world-class athletes make a physical activity look so effortless? How much mental fitness is needed to achieve your personal goals, reach your personal best, or get on the podium? I am a firm believer in the power of the mind and how it will contribute or take away from achieving excellence. Athletes at all levels spend most of their time developing their physical fitness with dedicated sessions designed to improve their speed, strength, and stamina for their race season or “A” race. While this is essential, it is equally important to invest and make a deposit into your mental fitness account. This might seem counter intuitive; however, I firmly believe…

The Mind of a Triathlete: How to Clear It and Exercise It

It’s been said that triathlon is a mental sport. But truth be told, well… actually, yeah, it is. Far too often we “data-buffs” find ourselves deep in the nitty-gritty of the science of triathlon training, nutrition, and gear optimization that we forget to mention how our brains are going to handle all of it. To state the obvious, triathlon takes focus and lots of it. This is something most of us struggle with. Fear and distractions are what take athletes with great potential and limit them to mediocrity. How do we exercise our minds to keep them focused? And how do we clear them to avoid fears and distractions? Tempered Expectations One of the best ways to focus your mind…

3 Traits of Triathletes - Today's Racers

It’s safe to say, there’s no such thing as a “typical” triathlete. However, just as Master Sommeliers with their individual wine expertise share certain passions and traits, so too today’s triathletes find connection and commonality in the sport. Here are a just few traits of triathletes – see if they describe you. 1. Triathletes set goals. Understatement #1! Honed. Extremely self-disciplined. Dedicated…possibly obsessed! Goals are not just to be achieved, but achieved for the purpose of setting a yet higher one – and conquering that one, too! It’s finishing ahead of you previous time. It’s sacrificing to make real your goals. It’s checking it off the “Bucket List”. Triathletes consistently strive to conquer that next challenge. 2. Giving Your All…

Mental Training for Triathletes

When preparing for a triathlon event, you wouldn’t wait until race day to prepare your legs, lungs, heart, or even your gear. So why ignore and neglect your mind?  In fact, some athletes might argue that preparing your mind is more important than your physical preparation, especially when it comes to long course triathlons, such as IRONMAN. The truth is, the most physically fit athlete can easily be derailed on race day if mentally unprepared. Many athletes think of mental training as pushing their physical limits by mentally blocking out pain or ignoring the desire to ease up or stop. This is, of course, a part of mental preparedness; however, mental training goes far beyond this concept. Techniques and practices…

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