Let It Go
As an Athlete, you tend to be motivated and ambitious, so when you see something amiss, your instinct is to take action. But not every problem is yours to fix, which can stress you out. Training your focus on the things in life that you can control (and ace!) will prevent this unnecessary stress and keep you blissfully on your game. Your new mantra: Eyes on the prize.
Catch Some Air
You know that the way you breathe can impact your sports performance, powering you to a strong finish or leaving you limping to the water station. In the race of life, deep, diaphragmatic breathing will keep stress from getting in your way. The next time you feel tension mounting, try taking a few relaxed breaths: Inhale slowly through the nose for several seconds, then exhale through the mouth for twice as long.
You fill your iPod with guided training sessions and soundtracks synced to your workouts. Now download another piece of your mental game plan—guided relaxation. Studies show that listening to soothing music and calming voices can help athletes gently contract and release taut muscles and lower the stress hormone cortisol. Browse relaxation music and guided exercises on iTunes, or record your own—we’re especially receptive to suggestions made in our own voice. Ready, set, relax!