As athletes, many of us have honed our skills when it comes to physical resilience. Adapting to new challenges, maintaining stamina and strength, and recovering quickly and efficiently are all things we have likely faced, experienced first hand and become quite good at.
Mental resilience goes hand in hand with physical resilience. Whilst adapting to challenges, maintaining stamina and recovery are all physical actions, they are largely thanks to how we can mentally face and conquer what is put in front of us. When you are pushing on the last lap of a race, it is your body that does all of the physical work, but your mind that is instructing your limbs to dig deep and push harder. So without even knowing it, it is likely you are pretty top notch at mental resilience too.
Did you know? When your brain is telling you to stop, it is commonly believed we are only at 40% of our capability.
Mental resilience in 2021
In our regular day to day lives pre-pandemic, our mental resilience has the physical and emotional support and guidance of our fellow athletes, trainers, classes, equipment, race crowds and general camaraderie. When gyms were open we could turn to our fellow training partners to give us a mental and emotional boost when we were lagging. There were also trainers to give us motivation when we were short of it, and classes to attend when we struggled to find a reason to push through stiff muscles.
This past year however, many of us have had to develop a new level of mental resilience, and for that we applaud you. You have created your own schedules, adapted your training to the new normal and turned to your inner resilience to keep pushing when it could have been so easy to give up.
Beautifully, you have kept going despite not having the end goal of a race to drive towards. For many of us, the deadline of races are a cornerstone to our schedules and training plans. Over the course of the pandemic we have loved seeing you hone your home workout routines; Using weighted KitBrix bags as training packs, nabbing cans of beans from the kitchens to use as weights, and taking up new hobbies like kayaking to fill the space that closed gyms left. We can’t tell you how proud we are of #TeamKitBrix’s mental resilience and refusal to quit.
If you are looking for a bit of inspiration after facing the news of a 3rd lockdown, we have a few tips on how you can stay motivated and emotionally resilient.
1. Focus on strength & flexibility
With copious amounts of free videos on Youtube and helpful articles to read, you can find easy-at-home workouts designed just for your sport. Why not read ‘How to Bike Train Without a Bike’ to get you started.
2. Focus on your weakness
We all have them, we are all human after all! What better time is there to strip it all back, and focus on your weakness. When races commence again you will be ready and raring to go, better than ever before.
3. Stay connected
With the help of apps such as Strava, you can stay up to date with what your friends and training partners are doing, even send the “kudos” to show your support. Draw from each other's drive.
4. Do a virtual races
Many of our favourite races have now gone virtual. Whilst they aren’t quite the same, they can help with speed training and give you an end goal to work towards.
5. Look at your past achievements
If you are having an off day and your emotional resilience is wearing thin, looking back at old achievements can give you a high and something you can feel proud of. This can give you a new found passion for the sport you love and give you the drive to keep going.
6. Get a coach
If you are still struggling, getting an online coach can help give you that added boost when you need it most. After facing a 3rd lockdown, we don’t blame you!
When things go back to normal again, we can guarantee that the next time we see you at a race, we will be screaming from the finish line! See you then.