Iinterviewed an athlete by the name Juen Paul .The mentioned athletestudies at California High School. Paul has participated in marathonrunning for approximately ten years. Since his early childhood years,Paul claims that he had a passion for running in long marathon races.It is the inner motive that has inspired him to participate in thelong marathon race. A motive is a salient factor when it comes toathletics and individuals who are not intrinsically motivated may endup surrendering in participating (Witts, 2016). He has gainedexquisite experience due to the fact that he participates in thevarsity level marathon races. For three years, Paul has acted as anathletic coach for boys at Lowell High School. Recently, he wascalled upon to coach the Star club in preparation for the longmarathon races which took place at California high school. Due to thefact that am also an athlete my major interest was to understand howthe inner motive and mentality of running made Juen Paul becomerenowned as a remarkable athletic. Despite the fact that shortmarathon races are my best I still have an ambition of participatingin the long distance races. For this reason, I was keen to depict onhow Juen Paul has deployed his skills in enhancing his performance inthe field of athletics.
Aspostulated by Paul, a marathon runner should have a fundamentalpotential of completing the event. In addition, the person should behighly competitive. Paul claimed that the virtue of endurance hasbeen a contributing factor towards his performance. For an individualto complete a long race the person should have endurance (Lough,Pharr, Geurin, 2016).As a coach, he has come to learn many techniqueson how to run a long race without being tired.
Amongthe mental aspects that have aided Paul in improving his performanceas a marathon runner is the potential of being tough. Mentaltoughness is denoted as the ability of an athlete to performexquisitely regardless of the internal emotions, distractions andexternal conditions. Being a champion athlete he has developed themajor habits and traits that have strengthened his mental toughness.One of the habits that Paul has developed is resilience. Whenever heencounters a disappointing performance, the marathon runner does notbecome discouraged. Instead, Paul moves ahead to focusing on beingthe winner at the end of the race. Another mental aspect exhibited byPaul is the focus. He claims that he does not target towards avoidingsituations when running, instead, the runner addresses the conditionsright away. His biggest motivation is running and therefore when hefeels tired and hurt, he never quits. This is the time when Paul putsmore focus.
Asa marathon runner, Paul uses various mental preparations forpractices. According to him, the ability to predict the situationsand get ahead of time is a significant strategy (Cidell, 2014).Avoiding panic in times of crisis has made Paul perform better. Themarathon runner explained that even if the competitor moves in frontof him, the only thing he does is adjusting the pace and stayingmentally calm. As a coach, he prepares adequately on how to talk tohis runners. He usually aims at creating a motivation climate thatencourages the runner to pay attention to the skills being explainedto them. Besides, Paul deploys the use of visualization and imageryin aiding the runners to imagine on how they will perform during thecompetitions. Moreover, he gives the members an opportunity to shareideas among themselves. He embraces the use of motivation byappraising the runners whenever they depict a sign of improvedperformance.
Duringthe competition, Paul encounters various distractions that affect hisperformance. Members of his team also face the obstructions. One ofthe factors that impact on performance is the tendency to check outthe running gear of the other runners during the competition(Weinberg, Gould, 2007).AsPaul propounds, such a habit wastes the time of runners and makesthem lag behind. On the same note, admiring the scenery where thecompetitions are taking place distracts Paul and he finds that hiscompetitor has bypassed him. Another factor acting as a distractor islooking along the sidelines especially when he sees the person who isfamiliar. He posits that such a behavior makes him lose focus givingan opportunity for the competitors to run ahead of him (Weinberg,Gould, 2007).During coaching, Paul also notices that the runners are distracted bydifferent facets. In the first case, the runners have a notion oflooking at their watches .This obstructs their attention making themmiss important techniques that are explained by the coach. Listeningto the audio books is another aspect that affects the concentrationof the runners during practice (Buning, Walker, 2016). Paul pointsout that the team members miss salient aspects when they getdistracted in the process of practicing. Nonetheless, Paul deploysthe use of various mental skills in order to overcome thedistractions. In the first case, he puts more focus on his form. Thisis because, during running, he sometimes become tired and startschecking the running gear of the competitors. Therefore focusing onhis form enables him to concentrate on the mechanics instead of thepain. The finishing line also motivates Paul to avoid thedistractors. Every moment he gets distracted during the performance,he remembers that the finishing line should be crossed.
Accordingto Paul, the most enjoyable aspect of his participation is when hebecomes the winner at the end of the marathon race. Leading amarathon race is one of the factors that motivates Paul and makesaspire to participate in the long distance races. As a coach, themost exciting part is when the team members understand the techniquespresented by Paul. He likes it when the runners ask questions on howto foster their performance.
Fromthe conducted interview, I learned significant aspects pertaining tothe marathon race. One of the most important factors that I realizedis that motivation is a salient facet for any individualparticipating in a marathon race. Essentially, people are triggeredby their inner motives to perform various activities. Anotheressential aspect that I depicted is that focus is important forindividuals participating in a marathon race (Buning, Walker, 2016).This is because in the process of running a person can become tiredand quit the race. However, being focused towards crossing thefinishing line makes one continue with the race even if theindividual is fatigued. Moreover, I came to realize that, as a coachone should motivate the team members and give them an opportunity toshare ideas among themselves.
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Cidell,J. (2014). Running road races as transgressive eventmobilities. Social & Cultural Geography, 15(5),571-583. doi:10.1080/14649365.2014.908236
Lough,N. L., Pharr, J. R., & Geurin, A. (2016). I Am Bolder: A SocialCognitive Examination of Road Race Participant Behavior. SportMarketing Quarterly, 25(2), 90-102.
Weinberg,R. & Gould, D. (2007). Foundationsof sport and exercise psychology(1st ed.). Champaign, IL: Human Kinetics
Witts,J. (2016). : Effortless:. NewScientist,229(3058),38-41.