Your mind can be your worst enemy

Weekly reflection

Well that is it then, end of week 9 of the IRONMAN Wales training programme; so far so good. I haven’t missed a session yet, but it hasn’t been easy. I now appreciate the importance of consistency and the positive effect this has on training; it is paying off.  Avoiding the temptation to deviate is worthwhile.

Keep turning up

I hope by ‘turning up’ for each session at whatever hour (sometimes early), will in the end get me to the finish line in under 12 hours.  Mindset really does play a massive part.  On occasions this week, I had to battle against my head telling me not to train and my programme saying I should. I am not a slave to the programme, and I will work around my weekly routine. Mostly this is to fit in with work and a very understanding family. If early mornings are needed, it’s about getting up as quietly as possible and completing the session before anyone else rises or calls for a cup of tea!

Resist temptation

In the 9 weeks to date, I have on a few occasions been really tempted not to train, there has always been a convenient excuse, and whenever tempted I have without fail been glad that I did the session after the event.  Getting comfortable with being uncomfortable and saying YES when 90% of my head is saying NO is key.  Just writing this blog is a help; a bit of self-affirmation and it is quite enjoyable.

Support from others

I met a friend of mine this week for a coffee who has done a few IRONMAN events, including Wales. He was full of positivity and encouragement, which was a big help.  He also reminded me just how important it is to train the mind as well as the body.

IRONMAN Wales is reputedly one of the toughest events on the circuit, with a challenging swim, significant climbing on the bike and a tough run. Besides that, the weather is very unpredictable, so I need to be prepared and overcome any adversity on the day.  Training for that starts now in the winter months!

Take away

The moral of the post, and my reflection for this week is that life is full of challenges but if we avoid making a story out of them in our heads, they cease to be a problem. With any ‘event’ or training session, we have to be mentally as well as physically strong, and keep getting used to being comfortable with being uncomfortable.  I am assured that success will follow.


  1. Sally

    You are an inspiration!! Those lessons could apply to anything in life and the stories we weave. They will stand you in good stead for life as well as the IRONMAN. So proud to know a real life IRONMAN!! OMG! Go Mark 🏃🏻‍♂️🌟🌈🦄

    1. Post
      Mark Philpott

      Such kind words Sally. Life is so short and there is so much we can do but we are the ones who hold ourselves back from amazing experiences, I value these the most now if health continues to allows. This is part of my WHY and what keeps me exercising towards my goal each day! As a result, I know there will be more. Thanks for your encouragement.

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