Success with Stamina
Success with Stamina
A little blog about being a triathlon coach. Here you'll find a little diary about my activities as a coach, the performances of the people I work with and my thoughts and opinions on what makes athletes faster for longer.

Lessons from the Olympics 3 - I don't get nervous

AndyBby AndyBSep 5th 2012
Michael Phelps sat in a press conference during the first week and when asked about how he handles the nerves associated with Olympic finals he replied that he didn't get nervous, just excited.

It's an interesting idea that the pressure most would feel and understand as nerves is perceived, in this situation by Michael Phelps as excitement. It got me thinking about what happens in the body when in a traditional 'nervous' situation, such as before a race or when being faced by a challenging situation. Butterflies in the stomach, an increased heart rate, an elevated breathing rate. Then comparing what happens in a situation which would be regarded as excitement and the same responses occur in the body. So what dictates how we feel?

It appears that when a situation occurs that challenges us, be it a local triathlon, a hard training session or an Olympic final (for those who make it that far) and the heart begins to race, the mouth become dry and the butterflies appear in the stomach; you can choose to interpret those physiological reactions in your mind as either a threat or an opportunity. Do you become nervous or do you become excited in the face of a challenge? These physiological responses will occur, they are natural, but by choosing to interpret these feelings as excitement, opportunity, your moment to shine, you'll offer yourself every chance of rising up to the challenge you have before you and succeeding.

So next time you start to feel the heart rate start to rise and your mouth begin to dry out stop, think and may be choose to become excited by the opportunity this challenge represents!
ashleybrookesby member: ashleybrookes, Sep 5th 2012 12:19
good report, like this one, best to be relaxed and let the body get on with it, then tell the body to keep going once it starts to get stressed (2 minutes into the race)
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