Click the image to read an article I wrote last year on Mental Fitness. I believe that anyone qualified for Loretta's can win it all - question is, do you believe you can?
By: Jim Bull
So you want to win some races?
I hear this all the time as I talk to racers and their families. How can I go faster, if I could just catch so and so, if I could only get a good sponsor? Isn’t it most people’s goal, to come out and do the best they possibly can? Many are chasing the pie in the sky but for some, that’s not the case. I know many racers that come out just to enjoy the ride, maybe to spend some quality time with their family and friends and to enjoy relaxing on a Sunday at the local track.
For those of you on that mission, I applaud you. Motocross and off road racing can be some of the best times spent in your lifetime. It’s a productive way to stay in shape while having some fun with the people you love.
For others that are chasing the dream however, it can be all business. Much time and money is spent on achieving better results. Many go out and spend money on making more horsepower and having better equipment. Riders go to the gym to improve their physical strength and they home school so they can ride everyday and many spend countless hours in the off season running up and down the coast to get that valuable ride time. All necessary factors in becoming a champion and I endorse it all. Many though have not figured out the most important element for success and that’s what I want to talk to you about today.
Drum roll please, it’s your attitude and your ability to believe that you too can be a winner, your mental strength. Now I know many of you are laughing at me right now. Tell me something I don’t know you’re thinking to yourself. Here’s the problem though, most of you already know this important part of the process. Unfortunately you either don’t practice this or you don’t know how to improve your thought processes and thirdly here is the most unfortunate reason you haven’t mastered this solution to being able to go faster. There is someone or a group of people in your life that is unintentionally keeping you from getting better.
Now, don’t blame them. They probably don’t even realize that they are doing it because they’ve never been taught about the power of belief either. We all go through our busy lives and we are surrounded by gloom and doom. Turn on the TV or open a newspaper and what do you get, catastrophe everywhere. The problem is that every negative fact that we put in our brain, stays there forever. Your brain is the largest computer on the planet and it files and stores information for you to use at a future time whether good or bad. So here we go, you put garbage in – you get garbage out.
To be able to take it to the next level you have to do all those things I talked about above, because everybody else is doing them. But to be better than the next guy, to take it one step further, you’ve got to get your head right. If you want to be a champion, you’ve got to make some changes in your thought processes. For some, it won’t be easy, but if you know how to do it, and you’re willing to work hard at it, it’s a piece of cake.
The first step in the process is to - believe you can. So many times in life I’ve heard people say, “I’ll have to see it to believe it”. I once heard a very wise man say, “First you have to believe it, then you’ll see it”. It’s so true, how many times has someone told you, ”you’ll never catch that guy” or you think to yourself “I don’t think I can get the holeshot with all these fast guys here”. Then what happens, exactly what was spoken or thought. You need to have confidence in yourself that you can accomplish the things that matter to you, no matter what anyone else says. If you have too, get away from the people that are saying these things around you. It may not always be comfortable but just excuse yourself and let them know that you are training and you need to get going. They don’t need to know that it is mental training you are talking about.
Here is an exercise you can do at home. Make a list of 10 things that you want to become a reality. Things like, I’m getting faster every day, I love getting the holeshot, I’m superfast in corners, school work is easy, etc, etc. You pick them, they are your desires. Then make a couple of copies of this list and place them where you’ll see them on a regular basis. Places like your bedroom mirror, or on the refrigerator, maybe inside your math book. Now read this list a minimum of three times a day out loud. It is very important that you read it out loud because it is more believable for you to not only think it, but to hear it out loud. Eventually you’ll memorize your list and you can repeat it over and over as you go through your day. Don’t let anyone make fun of you for the things you have on your list and don’t let anybody convince you that you are crazy or that you’re not going to get better by reading your list out loud to yourself over and over again.
Do this every day and I guarantee that you will improve your riding skills in no time at all? The list should only have around ten items on it but you can have as many lists as you want. So go ahead and try it, what do you have to lose? The worst thing that could happen is that you get better at even one of the things on your list.
There are many other things that you can do to better prepare yourself mentally for your eventual success. Tune in next month and I’ll talk about some other ways to improve your mental fitness. Thanks for reading and if you ever have any questions on how to get your thought processes better please say hi at the track or catch up with me on Facebook. Here’s to your success, I believe you have what it takes.
If you really want to win - make that list. You have two weeks to convince yourself that you can.