Running Basics, Tips

7 Mind Tricks to Get you to the Finish Line

Mind Tricks

Running a half or a full marathon – or even just your usual weekend long run – can be physically and mentally tough, and would make you want to give up. The good news is you can actually train your mind to think otherwise! Here are mind tricks that you can do to help you get to the finish line strong.

7 Mind Tricks to Get you to the Finish Line

1. Break it up – Break your run into shorter distances. You can, for example, mentally divide your 42km run into a series of 8 x 5km+ runs. Consider every segment completed as a milestone to give you an additional confidence boost. Plus, thinking of the next 5km instead of the next 30kms is much easier on your mind – you’ll be done before you know it.

2. Find a Mantra – Pick a powerful, motivational phrase, such as “One step at a time,” and repeat this over and over in your head. This can help you stay focused and pumped throughout your run. Already have a Mantra? Share it Below!

3. Visualize Success – When you find yourself struggling at any point, visualize yourself as an Olympian marathoner or a runner you admire, who’s nearing the finish line. Imagine that you’re running just like this person, relaxed and with the proper form. Picture yourself crossing the finish line and getting a finisher’s medal just like them!

4. Play Counting Games – Try this: Pick a piece of running gear, such as a blue running shirt, to look for during your run. Then count how many runners you see wearing it.

5. Zone Out – Think about something else aside from running. I have friends who are in creative industries who brainstorm design ideas while running. Some people like to think about their vacation plans, or their children’s funny antics. Take your mind to your happy place. 

6. Do “The Lasso” – This is similar to drafting. Imagine throwing an invisible lasso on that runner ahead of you. Think of that runner doing most of the work while they tug you effortlessly forward. It may take some practice but it works.

7. Make Post-Run Plans – Plan where to have your post-race meal, or where you’re going to after the run with your friends and family. This gives you something to look forward to!

How about you? What’s your favorite mental trick while running?

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52 comments on “7 Mind Tricks to Get you to the Finish Line

  1. Eh ka-pace mo crush mo eh kaya sabay lang kayo kaya wala ka talaga hahabulin na…clok.clok.clok.clok.clok.clok. (animal sound)

  2. agree!! madalas, naghahanap ng gwapong runner tapos susundan matapos lang ang inaasam na PR.. hahaha

  3. Bakit sakin pag iniisip daw ako ng asawa ko napapabilis daw xa ng takbo,,, hehe lalo na pag araw ng sahod :)

  4. Other running tricks: “Konting km na lang, aabot na ako sa finish line (at makakasilong na ako sa init ng araw).”  “Lapit na ang aid station / portalet / finish line”  “Pag umabot ako sa cut-off time, makukuha ko yung medal ko (at makakauwi na ako).  Kasama sa bayad yan!”  “Gusto ko nang kumain ng buffet; sugod na!”  “My family / friends are waiting for me at the end of the race.”

  5. sa umpisa nghahanap ng chix as pacer or png warm up tpos sa bandang huli ng hahanap ng mlkas mka PR lng.

  6. Here is my Mantra that got me to finish my first marathon, “pain is temporary, pride is forever!”

  7. Isiping sayang ang binayad kaya dapat tapusin hehehe…
    kidding aside, i dedicate my first mary to my mom…

  8. Hahaha… May hinahabol talaga akong type kong guy na laging nasa harapan… Ang bilis nya kasi U0001f604U0001f604U0001f604

  9. kanta lang kahit ano, wag magpapaiwan sa kotseng natatrapik.
    Isipin na kasabay si Pacquiao o Coach Rio.

  10. I used this advice during my very first 21k “break it up”. iniisip ko nun apat na 5k lang yun hahaha.

  11. Mica Sofia Flores and Rhailina J. Muallam, tips para makarating sa finish line. :)

  12. I do the “Level up” trick where you get 1XP for passing another runner in the race. The more experience you gain, the higher your level becomes. Got this trick from my super cool coach. I personally find this very effective specially when doing a Sub1 10K. ;) Pag mga long distances na kasi like 12, 16, 21, 32 and 42 ang iniisip ko hinahabol na kami ng mga kriminal at pag naabutan ka nila saka ka nila papatayin. Medyo brutal pero mapapatakbo ka talaga kahit pagod ka na kung ganun hahabol sa’yo di ba? Well siguro time to change na my trick once maupo na si Du30 since mababawasan na ang mga kriminal sa Pilipinas lol U0001f602U0001f44dU0001f44a

  13. Say it again and again …. ” yung iba nga kaya ako pa kaya kaya ko din yun!!! ” and think for FS , medal, cert and meal U0001f609

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