Woody’s Mind

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This topic contains 12 replies, has 5 voices, and was last updated by  Woody 15 years, 2 months ago.

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  • #1262

    pski
    Member

    Woodman, your the goods!!

    I happened across your post about my mental state. First off, if nine of ten tell you something you should listen 8)

    Woody, you are somewhat correct in assessing my conditoning last fall. It was patchwork training. I made no secret about it. You claimed to be doing all kinds of training with an eye on Chicago. BUT, you let Erhardt into your head and tapered for Al’s even against your own better senses. Letting someone in your head like that is not a sign of mental toughness IMHO. You had a great run and PR’d, but with the reports of those great track workouts, alot of people wondered if you raced soft and fell short of expectations. The catch 22 and you seemed to let it bother you. You killed me at this race, which I in fact raced and I commend you on the race and the result. I was simply pathetic and have the mental wherewithall to admit I sucked!! 😯

    I liked the debate about potential, but so many miss the boat. God himself I believe has determined your potential, and he delights in our journey’s to find it in whatever we do. I am what I am and that I accept this makes me tough mentally.

    Woody, I’m still out of shape but getting on the horse again. I would challenge you to a mental contest, Let’s do Ice Age just to finish. Actually the toughest mental case I know is between Dehart and Erhardt, must be a matter of heart.

    Woodman, your tough, your a hockey player which I don’t forget, and a great golfer. Furthermore you have a great heart. Life however has dealt me circimstance which arguably make me tougher in some regards, ie a tough neighborhood growing up, 7 years of military service, 21 years as a cop, seeing life’s madness on a regular basis.

    I’ve done the tough workouts with DD, Cameron, Kooch, and still remember a gut check where Ryan helped me finish a five miler on the track. If I’m training soft, I’d hope they tell me!!

    That and 9 out of ten can’t be wrong 😀

    Regards, PSKI

  • #13553

    Zeke
    Member

    I was thinking about bringing up this topic again, because some of the previous comments got lost in another thread. This is one of my favorite topics. I think mental toughness, which includes things like staying relaxed, keeping a positive mental attitude, visualizing your race, etc. is HUGE. Everyone has run in a race where they are pushing really hard starts to tighten up. They start to clench their fists, then their shoulders, then their face. You can teach yourself to remain relaxed and therefore run a better race. Same with negative thoughts creeping in once things start getting hard. It happens to everyone. You can work on staying positive, which will lead to better racing.

    I think some of the discussion has confused mental toughness with fitness. Woody, you talked about you beating Pski when he was way out of shape. That’s not you being mentally tougher than Pski, that’s Pski being extremely out of shape. As Ryan has mentioned, when 2 people are in the same shape, the one who’s mentally tougher is going to win.

    There are lots of good books on this topic:

    Running Within by Lynch is probably the best on the market right now.

    Mental Toughness Training by Loehr.

    The Competitive Edge: Mental Toughness Training for Distance Runners by Elliott. The best I’ve found but it’s out of print.

    The Total Runner also by Lynch is out of print.

  • #13554

    Zeke
    Member

    I knew I forgot something else that I wanted to mention in my previous post. If you’ve read Running with the Buffalos, Colorado’s coach talks about getting his guys to race at their fitness level. For example, when his teams gets to the National meet he wants them to run their own race, he’s not asking anything heroic out of them. I think he even gives a percentage of the guys that will run out their ass, those that will run up to par and those that will bomb. The percentage of the first group is really low.

    Not sure how this fits into the mental toughness topic. I guess it’s more in line with racing the shape you’re in.

  • #13555

    Woody
    Member

    It doesn’t bother me at all to have people disagree with me or have a good discussion about something. I will never agree with Pski or anybody who says he is tougher than me . I think you have a good heart and I think your upbringing makes you tough I’ll agree you have that.

    Why do you go up and down in weight and run slow times and fast times are you not mentally tough enough to wake up early every morning or run late to keep your fitness up or is that mental discipline. Believe me I understand Family demands.

    I get a big kick out of you thinking you get in everybody’s head when in real life your not effecting anybody but wasting energy. I remember a post where you said something to Cameron at boston in the corral and he runs a bad race and you think you got in his head? Sorry in my little world the training is what gets you the results you get tough in the training and the fitness comes out in the race . Maybe If two runners are in exactlly or close to the same shape as each other and they are coming down the last 800, then it becomes who wants it more and doesn’t want to lose and I would say a mental battle. What happened in the Marathon trials are Culpepper, Geb, and Browne tougher mentally then the 4,5,6 finishers or or they just more talented , trained better, ran a smarter race . I think people have a tendency to associate fast times with the person being more mentally tough. Erhardt — would you say he is mentally tougher than most because he ran a bunch of 2:30’s at a later age or did he train hard and put a bunch of 100 mile weeks together and get really fit over years to run those times. To me the intestinal fortitude comes from putting the miles in day in and day out year after year. I think you should be in the 2:40 ish range but you don’t stick to a year round program you just jump in when you want to start going again and stay somewhere in the 2:50-2:57 range. You’ll be stuck there so are you mentally tough enough to do it year round and see how good you can get. Pski I hate to call you out but I’m getting sick of you thinking you get into peoples heads when you don’t . It’s just a matter of time before all my PR’s are better than yours right now I got the 5k , 8k, 10k and the 1/2 will be going down real soon and the Marathon will go down it’s just a matter of time– I’m a patient dude and the talent will come out eventually — I won’t be outworked because my mental will and competitiveness will beat yours ! Does it look like I’m out for Pski, Your right I am! I’m sick of him telling people there not tough enough or they are weak menatlly. I’ve had talks with others and I’m the only guy who will stand up against this guy, so am I mentally tough 😉 So Let the rivalry begin , If you even want to call it that. 😀 I’ll go upto a marathon Ski your too mentally tough for me for the Ice age. I see this as a fun debate that can pull us to faster times 😆

    Zeke,

    I think mental toughness, which includes things like staying relaxed, keeping a positive mental attitude, visualizing your race, etc. is HUGE

    I would’nt call these mental toughness issues. Maybe mental preparation , I don’t know what catagory I would put these in. I do believe in mental toughness , but I would say a “will” to win . Especially in head to head competiton when at the same level and in running I personally see it more in shorter races, where the fitness weaknesses don’t come out quite as much as a thon.

  • #13556

    pski
    Member

    Wooodman!

    Your killing me. I’ve been in your head on this running thing since we met, but I never tell people that run they ain’t tough. On the contrary, I’ve been an advocate of even the penquin, anyone who will lace them up is tough in my book. Just how tough, we should all feel we are the toughest. I’m glad you feel that way. Since we’ve met, and I challenge you on this, have I ever done anything except have the intention to make you a better marathoner or runner? Erhardt is tough, as nails, mentally especially. He runs on fumes and never ran year round. Every winter he’d get fat and come back. Jamie Walz also comes to mind, I can’t believe I missed him. You see I have lists of people I consider tougher than me in many aspects, even mentally. Hell, I haven’t even had time to post recently. Cameron is tough, I never said he wasn’t. He let me yell at him for 13 miles, that’s rediculously tough. The only intention I ever had at Boston was to fire him up. You are right, all the fire in the world can’t replace training. Woody, I went from 96 to 2002 running and running and I broke away and ate my ass off, because I like it!! I invite you to crush all my PR’s. I always have always said you should. As soon as you want too and quit worrying about every little thing. I would be first in line to help you with any training. I would sincerely help you whoop me. It happens. Woodman, remember, I get in peoples heads for a living, and if I want to go there I probably will. Fact is I really haven’t conducted any heead screwing for a long time. Woodman, I’m a fan of yours, want to see you scream out a marathon in 2:40 before your too old. Buddy I wake up some days and I know they are numbered. Hope you don’t take any of this debate negatively. It’s not meant to be. PSKI

  • #13557

    Zeke
    Member

    I think mental toughness, which includes things like staying relaxed, keeping a positive mental attitude, visualizing your race, etc. is HUGE

    I would’nt call these mental toughness issues. Maybe mental preparation , I don’t know what catagory I would put these in. I do believe in mental toughness , but I would say a “will” to win .

    I don’t know why you don’t consider these mental toughness issues. You’re in a race, negative thoughts creep in, you shut down and run 1:00 slower than your goal time. What if you were able to brush those negative thoughts away, focus on the positive, have confidence and hit your goal? Wouldn’t that make you mentally tough.

    I’ll put it in terms you can understand – golf. Don’t they say that Jack Nicholas used to visualize every shot before he actually swung at the ball? Why is Tiger so tough? Because he can stay relaxed, focused, visualize, etc. All which are mental skills that can be practiced and improved.

  • #13558

    Zeke
    Member
    pski wrote:
    Cameron is tough, I never said he wasn’t. He let me yell at him for 13 miles, that’s rediculously tough.

    Would Cameron be tougher if A) he ran 3:08 with you screaming at him for 13 miles or if B) he ran 3:08 without you screaming at him for 13 miles?

    Meaning could he have run that fast by himself?

  • #13559

    Woody
    Member

    It’s all good Bro! Just having some good banter. Still want all your PR’s !

    Love ,

    Woody

  • #13560

    Ryan
    Keymaster
    Zeke wrote:
    I knew I forgot something else that I wanted to mention in my previous post. If you’ve read Running with the Buffalos, Colorado’s coach talks about getting his guys to race at their fitness level. For example, when his teams gets to the National meet he wants them to run their own race, he’s not asking anything heroic out of them. I think he even gives a percentage of the guys that will run out their ass, those that will run up to par and those that will bomb. The percentage of the first group is really low.

    Not sure how this fits into the mental toughness topic. I guess it’s more in line with racing the shape you’re in.

    Zeke, I was also thinking of bringing this up because I also think the mental game is very significant. I also wanted to point out what you mentioned here because this is something that Coach Hall worked through with me when I was in college. I went through a period of putting a lot of pressure on myself to perform at a very high level. After letting me try to work through it, Coach Hall sat down with me. We looked through my training and talked about what goals we had set for me. His whole point of the discussion was that nobody was asking me to do more than we all knew I was capable of. I was putting the pressure on myself. Once I accepted that I was perfectly capable of what was being asked of me, I was more relaxed and reached the goals we had set forth.

    Some of this seems to be confusion about what mental toughness means. Is what Coach Hall and I worked through mental toughness? I say of course. I didn’t have the toughness and discipline to calm myself down and realize that I was capable of my goals. Mental toughness encompasses many aspects of running. When I was running those 150 mile weeks, do you think that didn’t require some mental toughness? Hell, I averaged 23 miles a day for 7 days including 62 miles in two days. That doesn’t take any mental toughness, right? How about some of the workouts we do? You know, those workouts where you are jogging a recovery and thinking how your legs feel like jello and you have no idea if you can get through your last repeat. How do you respond? Do you pack it in or do you suck it up and push through the last repeat? We all have those voices in our heads during the races (at least I don’t think it’s just me) telling us that we can’t maintain this pace or we can’t possibly go that much farther. How do you respond? Do you back off or do you tell yourself that you’ll do it or die trying?

    The biggest aspect of mental toughness, IMHO, is simply believing in yourself. When someone tells you that you can’t do something, what is your response? Do you say “yeah, you’re probably right” or do you say “screw you, I can do it and I’m going to prove you wrong”? I can’t even tell you how many times in my life I’ve been told that I can’t accomplish something. By now, I actually like it when people tell me I can’t do something. Please tell me I can’t qualify for the Olympic Trials because that’s just what I want to hear. I promise two things. First, I won’t forget that you said that. Second, I won’t rub it in your face when I prove you wrong.

  • #13561

    Woody
    Member

    Mental toughness or competivness is an upbringing environmental issue. I do think it can be improved through practice in situations that happen through events. Such as pulling off a big shot at a crucial time that you didn’t think you could handle. Next time that shot becomes that much easier. Maybe this Briny will run better and better now that he had a mental breakthrough at the Trials. So I think you can get it as you develop and push your body to situations that you didn’t think you could handle and they become easier the next time. Tiger had a tough upbringing with his dad putting him in these situations at any early age with success , not to mention that his Dad’s best friend who also helped tiger at an early age is a Psychologist. They would isolate him and talk with him about outcome and how things should develop. He had everything just right in an athlete , upbringing , coaching , Genes, willingness to work hard at an early age, environmental , unbelievable will to suceed. He also found his right sport and gift on top of that. I feel there are still a bunch of athletes who have all that but never found their right sport or gift. I guess it’s hard to put mental toughness in one catagory. all these things we are talking about could be put in there. Relaxed arms and easy breathing could be put into form . This could be like a genetic vs. training debate. will all have different opinions with nobody being wrong.

    Oh yeah, Ryan you’ll never make the Olympic Trials 😀 Only Miles and Miles is tough enough

    Woody

  • #13562

    danm
    Member

    Golf is a good example of mental toughness because it is so mental. (Not crazy mental…but you know what I mean)

    Near the top rung in golf, every Joe-blow can hit the ball as well as the next guy. It is their mental ability to win when the pressure is on that separates the cream from the butter. Woody, I know, can attest to how difficult the game gets the better you get. I am sure Woody will tell you he has the physical goods to play top notch golf. Does he have the mental goods?

    Tiger Woods maybe the greatest athlete who ever lived in that regard. He is simply the best at the mental side of sport. Lots of possible arguing here

    Consider your mental toughness/ability and your physical gifts as two separate entities that meet at a pinnacle where your best performance lies.

    There will always be a time in some event when one or the other of those qualities is not 100% when you need it to be and your performance will wane.

    How many of us have known a kid or two with such incredible skill at something but he/she never amounted to anything because they weren’t the complete package?

    He is something else I think I know…if you ain’t there now, you ain’t goin there later. We can all get pretty good at the sport through good solid work but if we aren’t running 28 minute 10 k’s now, one of those gifts (physical/mental) are just not in our genes.

    I am definitely one who gets motivated by people telling I can’t do something too. But I am also a realist. If I would’ve been running 13-14 minute 5k’s as a 15 year old I would’ve thought, hey, why not give the olympics a shot? I don’t want to burst anyone’s bubble because I belive we are all inherently really good at something is the world, it is just by luck that some people find their gift early, cultivate it and either become a champion or go down in flames trying.

    I still think I would be darn good at fencing. Now there’s a man’s sport!

  • #13563

    danm
    Member

    Hope everyone gets really motivated to prove me wrong! But seriously, the important thing is that each of us gets something from our running and our competing and for each of us it is something different. It is OK to be a 34 minute 10k runner or a 40 minute 10k runner. If it satisfies that internal need, you’re a winner.

    When Tiger Woods has a 10 foot put to win the US Open and/or lose the damn thing, the guy usually makes it. We know he has the physical ability to sink a 10 foot putt. But how many people would make that same putt at that same moment after climbing through incredible odds to get to where you even have that putt…AND THEN MAKE IT?

    The guy is truly like almost no one in history. You don’t have to like him, in fact, it is pretty easy to not like him, but he is it. The big Cheese, the Big Kahuna, the…yeah, yeah, yeah. Back to work.

  • #13564

    Woody
    Member

    I hate Golf! I wanna run

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