The Human Race guide to keeping your spirits up in times of uncertainty

There is no denying it. These rather extraordinary times are tough. With events and races up and down the country postponed, gyms closing and most people working from home, the activities that stitch together a healthy and sane life for many of us have disappeared almost overnight. Here are a few ideas for keeping your spirits up in times of uncertainty.

1. Treat this as you do any unplanned break from your sport

Whether you must focus on work and family, or you are struck with illness or injury, there will always be the odd unplanned break from training. The main difference is this social distancing break affects all of us. Without doubt it is disappointing, disruptive and unsettling. But we must keep perspective. Our health and the health of our community is of paramount importance. This will pass. Events will be re-scheduled.

2. Keep active

We must focus on what we can control and the things we are able to do. Easier said than done, I know. Keep active in the house, keeping running and riding on your own whilst we can and build a new routine for this period. Here are a few ideas for keeping active during self-isolation.

3. Find your grit

Use your unexpected break as training for your mind to overcome setbacks. As LeBron James says, often “we are so focused on strength, we forget to strengthen our focus.” There are many apps to help guide you. The Calm app has a mental fitness series aimed at athletes whilst Headspace have put together a free pack specifically for Covid-19 pandemic called Weathering the Storm.

4. Take one step at a time

Or in this case 100 metres at a time. This film shares the inspirational true story of a Spanish man who when diagnosed with multiple sclerosis was told he wouldn’t make 100 metres – and yet he takes on an Ironman! It’s hard not to shed a tear and smile watching the trailer alone!

From ultrarunner Kilian Jornet’s Summits of my Life series to The Barkley Marathons and 3100: Run and become, there are a ton of films out there celebrating sport and the beautiful depths of the human spirit to help us find our inner strength. Red Bull also have a great list of road cycling movies.

If you are more of a reader, Cyclist magazine recently collated a diverse list books on cycling whilst Triathlete put together some great book picks for triathlon fans.

5. Podcast it up

There are so many great podcasts out there. Take this unexpected disruption as an opportunity to try out some new ones. Some of our favourites are: IM Talk, The Rich Roll Podcast and
Work, Play, Love with Lauren Fleshman and Jesse Thomas.

Let’s stay active, stay strong and keep our spirits up so we can get through this together and be there for our communities’ most vulnerable members.

Do you have any inspirational books, films and podcasts we can share with our athletes? How are you keeping your spirits up in these unique times?