How do you keep running forever? Become an experiment of one. Most runners would settle for 6-months injury free. But we all have a bucket list of races that we want to complete. Epic marathons in exotic locations. Massive multi-day adventures. Ultimate ultras.
What is your bucketlist race?
Everyone has his or her goal for one day. But how do you do it? What do you need? Turns out you need less than you think. As with all things running, it is your approach and mindset that determines your success.
Think like a professor
You need to develop a scientists mindset. Testing and hypothesizing everything. To find what works for you alone. If we are all unique, part of a 7-billion population, how can my advice, or my solution just blindly work for you? You need to try it and see if it works for you. Yes if you find what works for you, stick to it. But sometimes there is a better way.
It all adds up
And we as runners are always looking for that elusive improvement to our PB. Or list of races completed. Whatever your goals are, once you become an experiment of one, you will get much better results over a lifetime of running.
Look to the principle
An experiment of one also relies on principles and systems, not just short-term tactics and quick-fixes. We love to try new things, researching, applying, analyzing. But we work from a set of guiding principles that strive to keep things simple, and effective. Otherwise you will take up every new ‘wonder drug’ on the market, without much improvement, but with a definite hole in your wallet.
Develop your own
You need to develop your own set of principles for everything. From shoes, to racing strategies to nutrition. Take everything that is said with a pinch (or a handful of salt) and make sure you look as objective as possible at changes you make.
One at a time
In order to truly ascertain the effect of a new pair of equipment or food or strategy, only change one thing at a time. No use you try several different new things on a day and you end up with a set of random results. Test one thing at a time, isolate the results and you will either see an improvement or not.
This might seem overwhelming at first, changing a seemingly innocent sport into something like a job – but you can start small. Once you try a few things and see some results in your racing times, I promise you will be hooked. It becomes such a fun game!
So start looking at whatever is new on the market as a test case, and you will have much better results during your season!