Every time my girls come from practice or tournament/meet, the first question my husband and I ask them "how do you feel"? We want to know if they put in 100% effort into their game or if they didn't try at all. Of course, they HATE when we ask (particularly if their Dad asks. . .LOL!) the same questions over and over again. After we find out how they feel we start to ask questions like, "Well, if you didn't do this or that, how could you have changed the game?"..."If you decided to 'BRING IT', could you have passed the girl in front of you, made that game winning shot, etc? "How bad would it have been to push yourself just a little bit more?".
Now don't get me wrong, we want to make sure they are still having fun but if they are not trying and they are good, what's the point? As parents (who have made many mistakes in our lives), we want them to understand the whole picture, from the beginning to the end. Sports can be a great platform in explaining a start and a finish. The girls need to understand that if you are not trying at the start, your finish will be less than satisfying and then what?
If your goal is to run your first 5K, you have to take the first step and start with the first mile. It may take 12 weeks to get there or 4 weeks, but you have to take the first step.
Next, you have to visualize working towards your goal and not just focus on the end result. What steps do you take to make your first 5K happen? Obviously sensible training and a plan that you can stick to is a good start. Many times visualizing about the end result can hinder how we will get there. Work to get there and don't stop trying.
As you come closer to your goal, how do you expect to feel? Will that goal satisfy you or do you really want more or even something else? Be clear on what you want and keep challenging yourself.
My oldest daughter had the privilege to watch the Nike Cross Country Championships live this past season. For days after, she talked about the runners bodies, running form, times and their heart for running. After about three days of hearing the same stories over and over again, listening to her read the paper about some of her favorite runners I finally asked her, "what is stopping you from being one of those girls?". I could tell by her reaction, she was genuinely surprised that she COULD possibly be considered as one of "those" girls. I saw a light in her click. . .on. . . and the wheels starting to turn. Later that week, she asked me "what do I need to do to get there?". My answer, Just "try" by training smarter, training harder and believe in yourself. The worst thing that could happen is that you didn't try!