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Quotes by Greg McMillan


Nearly all runners know the voice in their heads that tells them to back off when the going gets tough. Part of training is to help you get better at ignoring this voice and continuing to push even though the voice gets louder and louder as you get more and more fatigued - this will happen in good races as well as in 'bad' races. Step one in perfect race execution is to recognize that even in great performances, the voice will be there. As my sports pyschologist friend, Dr. Stan Beecham, says, 'You ain't gonna get out of the race pain-free so you gotta pick the pain.' Sitting here evaluating, I think we'd all pick the few minutes of pain in the race over the regret that lives with you for days from a poorly executed effort. In the throes of a race, it's never so easy. So don't hope that the race feels easy. Expect it to be hard and know that you're going to have to repeatedly challenge yourself to ignore the voice in your head that wants you to slow down.

- Greg McMillan -

The best advice a coach can give is to choose your battles appropriately, focusing your hard efforts on the training days that are the most important. How many times, however, have your gotten carried away on an easy run? The run was supposed to be a recovery day from a previous hard workout and a prep for the next day’s race-specific training. Instead, it became the fastest you’ve ever run for your loop. Congratulations! You probably just screwed up the next day’s key workout and possibly set yourself up for injury later on. To avoid this error, know and adhere to the purpose of each workout. If the schedule calls for an easy day, then run easy. If it calls for a hard track workout, then ensure you are properly rested in the days before. Don’t let easy days get out of hand and become hard days, because of others, your own need for your running fix or just spacing out and not noticing the increasing pace. Be disciplined.

- Greg McMillan -

Bad workouts and races - we all have them and we always will. Accept that the body has an ebb and flow that we don't quite understand. Some days you just feel 'off.' As hard as it is to accept a bad workout or race when there are valid reasons, it's doubly challenging when there appears to be no reason at all. I used to worry about this, but now I just shrug it off as the quirkiness of the body and mind. Don't invest in it or overthink it. Move on.

- Greg McMillan -

Every long-time runner has experienced this phenomenon: week after week of great runs suddenly interrupted by one of the worst workouts in years, for no logical reason. I've found that the most successful athletes don't dwell on the bad days; instead, they're eager to move on to the next day's training or upcoming race.

Successful runners know that bad days don't last and aren't a true indication of their fitness. Bad days are just a freak occurrence that must be tolerated on the path to your goals. Running is hard but fun, and that short statement should tell us that there will be good days and there will be bad days. Live through both. Neither lasts forever.

- Greg McMillan -
(McMillan Running Company)

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