This morning, I went to a trail race in the Cleveland National Forest.
I had an epiphany. Physical fitness notwithstanding, my mind is always going to be my biggest obstacle.
During the last two miles, we had to take on steep hills. My mind kept fighting me "you're done, you're out of breath, start walking" and I kept pushing, Running. The more I pushed, the louder the voice in my head got. Until one point where the voice was gone. And I kept pushing.
Bottom line: practice recognizing these tricks your mind plays on you and practice moving them out the way. As we become more familiar with these situations, we grow more confident in our abilities. Confidence in ourselves is what make us athletes.