I want to talk about hitting the mental wall. We often think about the comment about hitting the wall when we think of sport and I have many friends who like to run and cycle etc who speak about hitting the wall at some point in the race.
But what happens after hitting the mental wall in our lives? Like our physical bodies, our minds can sometimes hit the mental wall too and we sometimes struggle more when this happens because unlike in sport we can suddenly ease off in life, the stress and anxiety that happens in our daily lives is a constant and at times doesn’t seem to stop or ease off, to allow us that break to feel better.
Sports people train hard working on their physical abilities and ensuring they have the right nutrition and rest, but how many of us do this for our minds?
Our mind/brain is the key to how we think, feel and interact with the things we do and people around us. It can control when we hit that wall and how we get over it or even if we get over it at all!
Our mind and bodies can take great punishment and withstand a lot of pressure, stress and strain, but the reality is if we do not take care of our minds then we can struggle with even the simple things in life.
I have been on this physical training course undertaking 10 weeks of personal training with Louis from Lemon Frog Fitness and each week I have become more aware of my mind giving up before my body does. When I have reflected about previous attempts to get fitter or healthier, I have begun to notice that the pattern was around week four to six I would start to find other things to do instead of going to the gym, my eating habits would return back to what they were before I started the training and my determination and willpower to continue would rapidly disappear.
Does any of this sound familiar? What can you do to help with your mindset? What things are you ignoring, that are stopping you from achieving your goals and aspirations?
The changes we need to make can sometimes be so small that they can seem inconsequential and we overlook them. I often speak with my clients about making small changes to their everyday lives and how they can do this. Louis has been training me in the same way – he has been encouraging me to change small things about my training to ensure I can continue to see the small steps and successes I am making during my time with him at the gym.
I feel that so much of my work overlaps with Louis’s and where he works with the physical body, mine is based around our minds, just imagine what you could do if you looked after all of you? Here are five quick things for you to think about adapting and using in your everyday life.
Recognise what you get right and what you are doing well each and every-day. We do this when things go wrong what about balancing it out?
Try and break everything down into a smaller task instead of seeing everything that is on our list to do why not focus on the first one and then the next etc. This helps us to feel that we are achieving more by recognising each step.
Take regular breaks and rest or change your environment to stimulate your brain. This could be just a few minutes of mindfulness or stepping outside for some fresh air, it doesn’t have to be for an extended period, so you will still get everything you need to do done!
Ensure that you eat and drink the right foods, remember that the way you treat your body and the food and drink we put in it will affect how your mind responds and reacts. This doesn’t mean we can’t treat ourselves it just means that if we eat or drink to excess regularly our body and mind will be affected. Moderation is key.
Sleep is vital, there are lots of different things we can do to aid our sleep and unfortunately there isn’t one thing that works for everyone. If you are not sleeping in the right way and this means if you are still tired in the mornings, then why not think about your bedtime routine and change some things?
I hope that I have given you some things to think about the next time you find yourself hitting the mental wall. Remember you are worth investing your time and effort into too.