Running is 60% Mental and 40% Physical: Part 1

We have reached the end of another year.

Throughout the year I have offered training tips and profiles of athletes from a variety of backgrounds. There are many training programs, but how do you know which one is right for you? To be honest you don’t know. There is no magic program just like there is no magic diet program.

Everything will begin with you and what it is that you want.

How bad do you want to achieve your goal, whatever what it may be? You may not want to lose weight because you’re fine with who you are, and that’s a good thing. Be who you are and not what others think you should be.

Rather than creating a training program and sharing that here, I find it’s better to use inspiration from others: what they do and how they do it. You might find something that creates a spark to jumpstart you. I’ve learned that we all have challenges to overcome and if we’re going to be successful then we must try.

If you can hold the line, then you’re winning.

As the years pass, tacking on additional years to your age, you’ll likely have to put forth more effort to achieve the same results.

Let me share some comments from Lindsay Carrick.

On October 28, 2018 Marine Corps 2nd Lt. Lindsay Carrick, a member of the All-Marine Team, took part in the Challenge Cup, a 41-year-old competition between the Marine Corps and the British Royal Navy/Royal Marines.

Originally from Bucks County in Pennsylvania, Carrick went to Council Rock North High School, where she experienced an underdog win at the 2011 PA State Cross Country Championships to cap off her high school running career.

The Marines Corps Marathon

“The 2018 Marine Corps Marathon race marked my first time truly having a running strategy. I rarely studied courses in the past since I try to not overthink things, but this year was different. It was my third MCM in a row, but I have terrible memory of turns and slopes after a race. So, to counter that, I broke the race into five segments (5K, 10K, Half-marathon, 20-mile mark, Finish) with associated paces (6:45, 6:40, 6:35, 6:35, 6:30, respectively) which were appropriate to the terrain of each segment all while going after 2 hours 52 minutes with a negative split.

The level of competition was a little unknown and I certainly had an eye out for the top two Army female runners. Then upon seeing Jenny Suanca (who, at the time, I didn’t know won in 2015) and Sarah Bishop (2017’s MCM champ) at the starting line, I knew my goal of top three would have its added challenges. The conditions were absolutely perfect and that helped keep my focus.

My placing within race results splits were a little off since I didn’t take the third spot, passing Sarah Bishop, until shortly after Mile 22. I believe the Royal Navy runner (Katie Synge) and myself were 6/7 for the first half, but then we started to slowly push up. After the bridge, my body went for it and my mind kept reminding me how disappointed I would be to finish one spot shy of my goal. My tight hamstrings at mile 23 just had to wait!

My first MCM was in 2016 all thanks to my older brother, Doug. He isn’t a Marine, but signed up with the Travis Manion Foundation to support a cause while crossing off a bucket list item. I found out in late July and, given our competitive but light-hearted sibling rivalry, I came across a bib transfer and finished third  female Marine in 3:12:10 while Doug ran a 2:57:57. This provided an introduction to the All-Marine team (Christine Taranto went down that year or else I would have come in 4th) as I didn’t expect to see any podiums on my first marathon.”

The 2018 MCM was my personal best by about 10 minutes. In 2017, the first year with the team, I ran a 2:58:37. I credit the big PR with a training plan that began in April in prep for the half marathon against the Brits in Torbay, England in late June.”

Carrick’s motivation

“My motivation comes from the cathartic yet challenging experience I find in running. I work best under pressure and create a self-inflicted ‘to-do list’ every day so that the time to decompress helps to refocus, stay efficient, and seek self-improvement.

Winning isn’t everything. My close friends and family may say otherwise since I take a different stance for any card game or backyard event. My siblings and I never experienced any pressure from my parents. My mom and dad simply wanted us to have fun. Growing up, I struggled with being a perfectionist (high school and even college all-nighters prove that), but have come to realize that you miss out on meaningful experiences and relationships if your desire is just to win.

Two years ago, I would have said time outweighs effort. Though with understanding that you don’t set a personal record (PR) at every race, performance is determined by how you handle the conditions and environment. I would also say that on any given day when your training time starts to shrink (due to a plethora of reasons, my top one being a platoon commander), I take on a ‘quality vs. quantity’ approach.

Running is the most emotional sport. I’ll never forget passing through the Blue Mile in 2016 with tears streaming down my face seeing such remarkable people of all walks of life holding pictures and carrying flags of their fallen loved ones. In all the lacrosse games I played, nothing could compare to running in step with a wounded warrior or someone pushing a wheelchair. From a day-to-day perspective, your emotions directly influence the outcome of any run or workout and vice versa.”



About George Banker

George Banker is the Operations Manager for the Army Ten-Miler (US Army / MDW), the second largest 10-mile road race in the Unites States and this year the race will accept 35,000 runners. The responsibilities include the operational planning, logistics, community outreach, designing of the course, volunteer recruitment, and support to medical and police jurisdictions. Started August 2003. Prior to joining the Army Ten-Miler he worked 25 years at IBM serving in administration and management within the federal marketing environment in Bethesda, Maryland. Retired from the U.S. Air Force (Enlisted grade Technical Sergeant) Experience include ground refueling supervisor and cryogenic fluids production supervisor. He received 14 military decorations including the Air Force Commendation Medal, Vietnam Service Medal, Republic of Vietnam Gallantry Cross w/Palm, and Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal (1969-1989). Since 1983, a freelance photographer and journalist, Senior Writer for the Runner’s Gazette, contributor to Running Journal newspaper, and RunWashington. District of Columbia Road Runners Club (DCRRC) Hall of Fame Inductee for 2006 The former president and meet director for the Mid-Atlantic Corporate Athletic Association Relays (1986-1993). Director for the Washington’s Birthday Marathon Relay (1989-1999), started the Relay. Race consultant, and steering committee member with the following events: Credit Union Cherry Blossom 10 Mile Run (1989), George Washington’s Parkway Classic 5K/10 Miler, Lawyer’s Have Heart 10K, Marine Corps Marathon (Historian - Ad Hoc Publicity Committee) , Navy Half Marathon & 5-Miler, and Woodrow Wilson Bridge Half Marathon. State Record Keeper USA Track & Field, 1993 to present. Chair, Trends and Issues Committee, Road Runners Club of America (RRCA) 1993-2000. Member USA Track and Field Hall of Fame. Avid runner, 99 marathons completed and serve in additional capacity as race announcer, media relations, and invited elite runner coordinator for several local area races. Six JFK 50 Miler completed to date. The Marine Corps Marathon in October 2014 will be my 100th marathon and my 31st time running it. Author of “The Marine Corps Marathon A Running Tradition” (1976-2006) September 2007 publish date. Completed 30 MCM’s to date (2013). ( December 2006 MetroSports Athlete of the Month Hall of Fame Inductee 2011 – Marine Corps Marathon Running PRs: Marathon 3:04:32 (’88) Houston-Tenneco, Half-Marathon 1:22:40 (’84) Philadelphia Distance Run, 10-Miles 1:02:10 (’87) Army Ten-Miler, 10K 37:42 (’84) Diabetes Derby, 5K 18:28 (’88) Stanford University, 1600 Meters 5:18 (’87) Gallaudet University. Graduated with an AA in Accounting from Prince George’s Community College with honors, Largo, MD (’76), and a BBA in Accounting from George Washington University, Washington, DC (’84). Educational community involvement: Volunteer speaker, Connection Resource Bank, Division of Family and Community Partnerships, Montgomery County Public Schools (1995- Present)

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