So tomorrow is the day! A few weeks back I talked about my new venture to branch into Sport and Exercise Psychology and how right after that I received this email inviting me to join a Psyching Team at the Run the Bluegrass Half Marathon. So, tomorrow is the day I head out to meet these new, exciting people on my team! To say I am pumped is an understatement.
Over the last few weeks, there have been numerous emails back and forth hashing out the details and plans of the weekend. Apparently, the race director forgot to plan accordingly for our team and has done very little to promote and advertise our unique ability to provide support. Womp, womp. No less, we still plan on attending!
The expo starts today, but due to our schedules, we have planned to not be present at the expo until tomorrow. There are several people coming in for both the expo and the race, but a few of us out-of-towners will be spending the night in the hotel together. Not gonna lie. Spending the night in a hotel room with someone I’ve never met before – a bit awkward (creepy?). Good thing I think of myself as an adventurer!
Dr. Day, a Sport Psychologist from OH, has been amazing at helping to facilitate the team. She provided us with a brief video on some training tips and techniques to assist and support the runners for before, during and after the race. We were advised the expo is the most rewarding of all the times to be able to work with runners, but our assistance will most likely be greatly appreciated both during and after the race, as well.
After watching the video, I was both inspired and intrigued. So many of these techniques I already use in my own running, but found there were a lot of new ideas to try not only to support runners, but utilize in my own running. One tip included a “grounding” technique where the Psyching Team member would provide racers with a piece of the finishing ribbon to pin on their shirt. While they’re running, they can look at the ribbon to help remind them of why they wanted to do the race in the first place and what the importance of finishing the race will mean to them. What a great motivation strategy!
While I would really love to share the video, Dr. Day also included her contact info in the video, and I’m sure she doesn’t want that floating all over the internet. So, instead I have found a great article from the American Psychological Association which explains in better detail the use of psychology in sport and exercise. I plan to do a post later on about some specific techniques explained in the video because I do think some of you would enjoy them and find them helpful as much as I did.
I will be sure to post a recap soon! Wish us and all the racers luck!
Have you ever seen psychologists/counselors posted at races to assist the racers?
How do you think an on-site counselor could be the most helpful for a racer?