This week's tip:
Final thoughts before the start of the 2005 Northshore Inline Marathon.
By Patrick Creveling
Any skater can learn proper technique and build huge muscles. But success in any sport is only 30 percent physical; the rest is mental. So in your training, be sure to devote some time to the development of a sharp and well-focused mental edge.
To do this, visualize the results you want to achieve in both your workouts and races. Imagine yourself achieving your goals — even if they seem out of reach. (It could be that all you need is a mental tune-up.)
Prepare for upcoming events by mentally "skating" them. Visualize all possible scenarios: falls, breakaways, disqualifications, your competitors ... everything.
See yourself winning. Visualize yourself moving into first place, turning on the afterburners and zooming across the finish line.
I like to think about the smart passes I will make in races, such as the one in which I pass on the outside (surprising the competition!) and then go on to win by half a lap.
If you do this kind of mental practice, you will be ready when opportunity knocks. You won't even have to think about it. You'll just react.
Most skaters neglect the mental aspect of training. But do the math: the physical is 30 percent; the mental, 70. Which is more important?
Patrick Creveling was the U.S. indoor national champion in 2001 and a member of the World Team in 2003. Born into a family of skaters in Pennsylvania, he is brother of 2006 World Team members Chris and Chelsea Creveling. A gifted teacher, he leads the popular Camp Creveling skate clinics. He graduated with honors last week with an associate degree in business administration.