You’re busy, everyone around you is busy… There are endless opportunities to find stress in life. Letting yourself get carried away by the stress is easy – it takes work to combat the stress. Meditation is a tactic that many athletes rely on, not only to reduce stress, but also to improve athletic performance. It’s a win-win. While the most effective form of meditation probably requires being in a quiet room, alone (highly recommended!), there are many other forms. If you are reading this article, moving meditation will probably come most readily to you, especially if you are not an experienced meditation practitioner. I personally find that focusing on my breath is the best way for me to access a running mediation practice. My current favorite breathing technique was described in Helen Pelster’s “Breath Better, Run Better” post from last year. Another great technique for the ultra runner’s toolkit is doing a gratitude practice during a run, which is a great way to combat challenging moments during a run. Or count footsteps, as described in this Runner’s World article. So, try leaving the headphones at home the next time you lace up your running shoes and give mindfulness a shot.
Have a breathing technique or other running meditation technique that you would like to share with the community? Leave a comment!