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WHY WE NEED AN ENDURANCE PLAN

January 19, 2020 THE MMA TEAM

As an 800m specialist, I’m considered an endurance athlete.  Some of you may beg to differ, but hey, if my training plan includes 10-mile runs, I can call myself an endurance athlete!  Anyway, as an endurance athlete, some of my workouts are really tough for me to get through.  By the end of an hour long run or during the last rep of a 4 by 1-mile tempo session, my lungs are burning, my legs are shaking, my heart is pounding out of my chest, and my mind is telling me to stop.  

You  may not be a runner, but  I’m certain all of you can relate to how I feel because life hands all of us situations where all we want to do is STOP.  We all have circumstances where we say, “I just can’t do this anymore” or “I have no more fight left in me” or “I should just give up.”  But, just like I’ve developed a method to help me push through the last mile rep of my workout, we all have to develop methods to help us push through what seem like impossible situations.  

 I like to call this an endurance plan.  Endurance is defined as the ability to continue an unpleasant or difficult process/situation without giving up.  One thing I know for sure is that we’re all going to face a variety of battles throughout our lifetimes.  I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to fight ANY battle without a plan.  My endurance plan is pretty simple:

 1. Take it one day at a time- We overwhelm ourselves by thinking about tomorrow, or next week, or next month, or next year, but we have to realize only TODAY is promised.  Worrying about the future creates so much anxiety.  Navigate today with the strength you have.  It may not feel like you have enough strength to endure any longer, but I promise you, you do!  You’re stronger than you think you are.  How do I know?  Because you’re here now reading this.  That last battle you fought, the one you thought was going to break you, it didn’t break you.  Nope.  It made you stronger.  You’ve got this.  One day at a time.

2. Have the right people in your corner- Who are the “right” people?  People who let you feel what you feel but don’t let you stay there.  They don’t make you feel bad for being sad, frustrated, angry, overwhelmed, defeated, disappointed or discouraged. They listen to you vent and are simply there for you.  But, once your pity party is over, these people hit you with tough love.  They tell you to get up and shake it off.  They remind you how tough you are and how far you’ve come.  These people love you too much to let you stop fighting, and they remind you that you’re not fighting this battle alone.  
3. Have battle words- When I start feeling like I can’t press on, there are certain Bible verses and gospel songs I turn to.  There’s something about repeating scripture to myself and listening to certain songs that helps me rise out of a slump.  Maybe for you it’s not Bible verses or gospel songs.  Maybe it’s a particular quote or lyric that you need to have on deck when the going gets tough.  Self-talk is SO important.  When our minds are screaming “STOP,” we have to combat those thoughts with some battle words.  

 

Now, time for some transparency-  I don’t always make it through all of my workouts.  Sometimes I stop.  Yupp, that’s right.  Sometimes I just do NOT have it in me to keep going.  And, guess what?  You’re going to have days when you literally just don’t have it in you to get out of bed.  I’m here to tell you that’s okay.  You’re human.  But just like I’ve learned to shake off those “crappy” workouts and get back to training the next day, we all have to learn to shake off our “crappy” days and get back to it.  Don’t stay defeated for too long.  The longer you stay down, the harder it is to get back up.

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