I love this guy!
He is Eliud Kipchoge (El-ee-yood Kip-cho-gay). Eight straight marathons and Olympic gold are his.
He won the Berlin marathon on Saturday in a world record time of 2 hours, 1 minute, 39 seconds. He is not far from an impossible sounding sub-2 hour marathon.
But it is his attitude around life that impresses, his disciplined, measured training and his intolerance for physical and emotional interferences that can easily highjack discipline.
For him, discipline is the premier reason he is successful. This is a familiar training element with elite (and amateur) athletes, musicians, singers, and dancers, everywhere. It is not about waiting to feel inspired to train, you just do it because it is the only way to get better.
But, here is the unique aspect of his discipline:
It is not about giving 100 per cent 100 per cent of the time.
“He estimates that he seldom pushes himself past 80% – 90 % tops – of his maximum effort when he circles the track for interval sessions, or when he embarks on a 25 mile run. Instead, he reserves the best of himself, all 100 per cent of Kipchoge, for race day – for the marathons he wins, for the records he chases”. (NY Times article 9/15/2018)
He goes into his marathons not overtrained, burned out or any version of doing too much. He has measured out his considerable facility along the way with good health as a result. He has never sustained a serious injury.
Of course I love this guy. He already embodies the Alexander Technique principles of ‘knowing what you are doing while you are doing it’ and it’s not what you do but how you do it. He’s not just working hard, he’s working smart. He is as energized by what he doesn’t do, as by what he does do.
Yet, he says “Only the disciplined ones in life are free. If you are undisciplined you are a slave to your moods and passion”. It’s just that his flavor of discipline includes a distilling down of all things unnecessary towards his goal.
The work I do focuses on this element of tuning your body like a radio station dial to get the best reception, sound, volume and balance of bass and treble. It’s a process of learning how your body works for you and noticing when it works against you and what to do about it.
If you want to find out more, book a lesson with me, either on Zoom or if you are in the NY/NJ area at my studio in Montclair, NJ. Please use my contact form below tell me about yourself and leave your availability. I will respond within 24 hours.
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Marjory Barstow, trained by F. M. Alexander