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123. How to Build Mental Toughness & Mindset Mastery

The Strength Running Podcast

Release Date: 01/30/2020

How to Stay Healthy By Strengthening Your Midstance, with Coach Chris Johnson, DPT show art How to Stay Healthy By Strengthening Your Midstance, with Coach Chris Johnson, DPT

The Strength Running Podcast

The midstance phase of a running stride is a crucial element of running form, but many runners are ignoring it. If you have weaknesses, imbalances, or poor movement patterns, this is the part of the gait cycle that will show it. Chris Johnson, DPT is a Seattle-based physical therapist, performance coach, entrepreneur, and multiple time Kona IRONMAN qualifier who shares how midstance affects your running performance and how you can improve it. In this episode, Chris and I talk about: Midstance importance in running mechanics and injury prevention The impact midstance has on muscles and...

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Running Form Tests, Technique Cues, and Footstrike Patterns with Physical Therapist Matthew Silver show art Running Form Tests, Technique Cues, and Footstrike Patterns with Physical Therapist Matthew Silver

The Strength Running Podcast

If you're starting to wonder whether your running form is helping or hurting your performance, we’re sharing two important tests that can help you better conceptualize how your body moves through space. Dr. Matthew Silver is a doctor of physical therapy, coach, cross country athlete, founder of Alpha Project Phyzio and Performance in Maryland, and author of the book "Built to Run." We spend a lot of time on foot strike, the problems associated with over-striding, and the many solutions for resolving this form error. In this episode, Matthew and I talk about: Testing running form through the...

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Recovery’s Big 5 Strategies with Dr. Peter Tierney show art Recovery’s Big 5 Strategies with Dr. Peter Tierney

The Strength Running Podcast

What makes the biggest impact when it comes to recovery strategies and tools for runners?  Dr. Peter Tierney is a health and performance researcher, consultant, and coach who’s worked with many professional sports organizations to help athletes recover effectively from exercise. Peter’s “Big 5” recovery strategies are science-backed and possible for runners to add to their training and lifestyle. In this episode, Peter and I talk about: Recovery as part of a lifestyle, not just a post-exercise tool. The Big 5 recovery strategies for runners and endurance athletes, and how to use...

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Believe in the Run Founder Thomas Neuberger on the Evolution of Running Shoes, New Shoe Trends, and Fad Features show art Believe in the Run Founder Thomas Neuberger on the Evolution of Running Shoes, New Shoe Trends, and Fad Features

The Strength Running Podcast

Thomas Neuberger has probably worn more pairs of shoes than anybody else over the last 15 years (with maybe the exception of Runner’s World Director of Product Testing and Runner-in-Chief, Jeff Dengate). Thomas’ deep experience in the running shoe industry gives him an unparalleled perspective on the evolution of shoes, why some features are no longer available, and the future of running shoes. In this episode, Thomas and I talk about: The 2009 origin story of Believe in the Run, a top shoe review company in the United States What it's like to test around 100 pairs of running shoes a...

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Andy Wacker: Exploring Longevity, Seasonal Training, and Supporting Trail Runners show art Andy Wacker: Exploring Longevity, Seasonal Training, and Supporting Trail Runners

The Strength Running Podcast

Trail running doesn't always mean running an ultramarathon. From trail 5ks to marathons, there's a growing interest in middle distance trail events. Andy Wacker is making this space a more vibrant and welcoming community for runners. Andy Wacker is a professional runner who excels on the track, road, and trail. He is the 2019 world Mountain Running Champ, 2016 US Trail Half Marathon Champ, 2015 US Trail 50k Champion, and a two-time NCAA XC All-American. Andy seeks longevity in the sport and embraces a seasonal training approach to keep him running strong across different distances and...

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Boston Marathon Preview 2024 with 18x Finisher & Author Marc Pollina show art Boston Marathon Preview 2024 with 18x Finisher & Author Marc Pollina

The Strength Running Podcast

The Boston Marathon is quickly approaching! Whether you’re racing Boston this spring or have it in your sights as a long term goal, this episode will help you learn all the ins and outs of this iconic event. Today’s guest on the podcast will be headed to Boston for the 19th time! Marc Pollina has run 26 marathons and has been a fixture at Boston as both a charity runner and a sub-3 hour qualifier. Marc’s new book, , offers an incredibly thorough look at the Boston Marathon, whether you’re trying to qualify for the first time or want to be better prepared to navigate race logistics. His...

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Unfiltered with Jon Levitt: Injuries, Business Updates, New Sauna Science, and More show art Unfiltered with Jon Levitt: Injuries, Business Updates, New Sauna Science, and More

The Strength Running Podcast

This week I decided to take you along on my conversation with my friend and fellow podcaster, Jon Levitt. Jon is a sub-3 marathoner and a Senior Sales Executive at . He also hosts the popular podcast, , where I was a guest on . We usually have long meandering conversations on trail runs throughout Boulder, but this time we recorded it.  While we start by discussing our current running troubles (and our efforts towards solving them), we ultimately focus a lot of our conversation on the professionalization of the running industry. As the sport continues to grow, all players in the industry...

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Is Everything We Know About Pain Wrong? Ryan Whited on a Better Way to Treat Pain show art Is Everything We Know About Pain Wrong? Ryan Whited on a Better Way to Treat Pain

The Strength Running Podcast

Ryan Whited is an elite climber, personal trainer and strength & conditioning coach who owns Paragon Athletics in Flagstaff, Arizona. Together with author and coach Matt Fitzgerald he has written .  His approach to pain is a novel one and requires you to think about it in a much different way than most of us currently do. Learning to use “training as treatment” and recognize the positive aspects of pain are just a few of the concepts we discuss today. Before pain starts, !  We also cover: Why pain can be a tool that is used to your advantage Understanding pain as a...

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Trials Marathoner Andrea Pomaranski on Defying Age at 41, Running 120 Mile Weeks, & How She Lifts show art Trials Marathoner Andrea Pomaranski on Defying Age at 41, Running 120 Mile Weeks, & How She Lifts

The Strength Running Podcast

Andrea Pomaranski just completed the 2024 Olympic Trials marathon, finishing 27th of 117 finishers in a time of 2:34:35. Andrea ran shorter distances in college and set the American under-20 record in the steeplechase in 2001. Then 22 years later, she also set the American Master’s record in the 50k. Des Linden is currently the only woman who has recorded a faster 50k! Andrea has qualified three times for the Olympic Trials in the marathon, and finished 27th this year only 20 days after racing the Houston Marathon. She credits her success to her long term consistency in training alongside...

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Ask the Physical Therapist! Caitlin Alexander, DPT Answers Your Injury Questions show art Ask the Physical Therapist! Caitlin Alexander, DPT Answers Your Injury Questions

The Strength Running Podcast

My guest on today’s episode in Dr. Caitlin Alexander. Caitlin is a physical therapist, a professional triathlete, and a certified triathlon and running coach. Three years ago she joined me on to talk about long-term injuries, and now she is here to answer reader questions on injury reduction. Caitlin owns in downtown Boulder, Colorado. She works with a wide variety of athletes, from weekend warriors to competitive triathletes and elite runners. In addition to physical therapy, Caitlin also offers professional bike fitting, personalized strength and conditioning, and endurance coaching....

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In high school, my indoor track coach always told our team to “get out of your comfort zones!” This valuable mental toughness training always reminded us that racing is certainly not comfortable…

And over the years, my ability to hone mental toughness into a skill to be used at will became easier and easier.

In the beginning, it wasn’t that way:

  • I sandbagged workouts just because I didn’t feel good
  • I “settled” on placing 2nd or 3rd in races because I was afraid to believe in myself
  • I’ve even dropped out of races for no good reason other than my head wasn’t in the right place

Even now, I have experiences that shake my sense of self-belief.

In 2015, I DNF’d an ultramarathon (my first and only attempt).

In 2019, I was disqualified for cutting the course (by accident) of a trail race.

These experiences shook my self-confidence and made me question whether or not I even possessed any mental toughness.

But I soon realized that I wasn’t approaching mental toughness in the right way. It’s not an issue of whether you “have it” or “don’t have it” – it’s an issue of, “are you working on it?”

That’s because mental toughness training is an ongoing practice that must be cultivated over time.

You’re never “done” with developing this valuable mental skill – just like you’re never “done” with workouts, long runs, or recovery runs as a runner.

This episode also includes an announcement about Mindset Mastery, our new coaching program. It's now open for up to 20 runners but registration closes on Monday, February 3rd!