Stoicisim is a way to lead ones life. A belief that destructive emotions come from errors in judgement. If we can remove the destructive emotion, only constructive emotion can remain. The way we behave in life, in training and in racing portrays us to the rest of the world. When we control what we can, success can only follow.
A true Stoic believes self-control acts as means of overcoming these destructive emotions. Becoming a clear and unbiased thinker allows an athlete to understand their strengths and weaknesses. From this they can address them. Only through honestly about them can they hope to progress.
“I look around and I see that others are training harder than me. Panic sets in and I pile on more training. I get injured and I don’t make the start-line.”
You can not control what the others do, their training should not cause emotional change, only you know how much you have done, if it is enough. If you have trained to your best, your best performance will emerge.
“I always crash in the first 20 minutes of a race! I don’t know why. I charge into the first corner, fight for space, drive through the slow riders. I just can’t hold it together with the guys on the better bikes!”
Emotions run strong at the start of a race. Wasted emotions that can be used to fuel latter stages of a race. Remaining alert yet calm, assertive yet relaxed, all of these are skills that can be taught. Training alone does not bring success. Control and anticipation can bring better results.
“I’ve missed two training sessions this week. I have to catch up, I must do more to get where I should be.“
Only you can get yourself where you should be. Making up for lost time is not possible. Using your time wisely, learning when you are going to loose time, focusing that time well. All of these are skills you can learn. Distress due to missed session is wasted energy. Not missing the session, or not stressing will lead to a better performance.
All of these are normal. All of these are real people. All of this can be avoided.