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Yes, Your Tired Mind Is Slowing You Down

Performance changes

Professional athletes do not suffer to the same extend amateurs do.

Elite athletes require a bigger dose of mental fatigue before their performance suffers, perhaps because they build up a functional immunity to mental fatigue. But when it happens, a possible solution could be to taper of mentally before competitions or perhaps special brain endurance training. 

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IDEA EXTRACTED FROM:

Yes, Your Tired Mind Is Slowing You Down

Yes, Your Tired Mind Is Slowing You Down

https://www.outsideonline.com/2411873/mental-fatigue-athletes-study-2020

outsideonline.com

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Key Ideas

Losing your fitness

One of the hot training topics these days is how quickly you lose fitness when your workouts are reduced. 

But you could also lose fitness faster because of what's going on in your head.

Mental fatigue

A paper published in 2009 called "Mental fatigue impairs physical performance in humans" showed that if the people do something that causes mental fatigue (computer games in this case) and then exercises, the perception of effort during physical exercise seems much higher than if there was less or no mental fatigue. Those who suffer from mental fatigue are likely to quit 15 percent earlier during training.

Performance changes

Professional athletes do not suffer to the same extend amateurs do.

Elite athletes require a bigger dose of mental fatigue before their performance suffers, perhaps because they build up a functional immunity to mental fatigue. But when it happens, a possible solution could be to taper of mentally before competitions or perhaps special brain endurance training. 

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Second-person self-talk and increased performance
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Research on self-talk for endurance
  • Individual variation. Not everyone benefits from the second-person self-talk. People with more narcissistic tendencies use first-person pronouns more frequently, making them more or less sensitive to the effect.
  • Customized self-talk for athletes. Framing self-statements in a positive light tend to be encouraging and actionable. For example, changing "keep grinding" to "I (You) can keep going."
Describing mental fatigue
Describing mental fatigue

It is the feeling that your brain just won't function properly. People will describe it as brain fog. You can't concentrate, and simple tasks take too long. You find th...

Causes of mental fatigue

Contributing factors to mental fatigue are poor nutrition, lack of sleep, hormonal imbalances, or cognitive overload. Cognitive overload can take the following forms:

  • When you focus on a single task for an extended period of time.
  • When you spread your attention across too many things.
  • Worrying about tasks. It is as mentally taxing as doing the task.
Give your brain high-quality fuel

Your brain is fuelled with the same food as your muscles. What you eat has an enormous impact on your cognitive functioning.

  • Cut down on refined sugars as it decreases alertness. Aim for sustained energy levels throughout the day.
  • Plan your meals in advance. If you wait until you're hungry, you're already low on energy and willpower and will reach for a quick energy boost in the form of sugar.
  • Don't skip breakfast. Without it, you may likely crash in the middle of the morning. Eat more eggs, yogurt, and oatmeal to sustain your energy levels until lunch.
  • Snack mid-morning and mid-afternoon to give your body consistent fuel.
  • Stay hydrated with water. Mild hydration can negatively impact cognitive performance.
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Perfectionism: The Pursuit Of Constant Excellence
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Elite performers are often perfectionists as their activity requires error-free performance.

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"“Looking for perfection is the only way to motivate yourself.”

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  • Low mood
  • Muscle soreness, aches and pains
  • Loss of good quality sleep
  • General tiredness or fatigue

Symptoms can vary wildly from person to person. Other life stresses, such as working long hours, difficult relationships, dieting, and not getting enough sleep, can accelerate the syndrome.
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Overreaching and best training recovery tools

Overreaching is a similar condition to overtraining and it is also characterized by performance decline, but recovery takes several days to weeks. Hard and frequent training, coupled with poor sleep, high levels of stress, and low calorie, low-carb diet may all make someone more likely to develop overtraining syndrome.

The best recovery tool is to manage your training.

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Embrace Pain, but Don’t React to It

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Components Of Mental Toughness
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Mentally tough people truly believe they can succeed. That extends to encompass even mundane things in their life.

Whatever you challenge yourself with, believing in yourself is essential. Avoid negative self-talk and instead focus your energy on staying positive and self-encouraging.

Seek Intrinsic Rewards

Intrinsic motivations are those that come from within an individual and involve doing things for their own sake. They drive them to do better, push harder, be stronger, and persevere.

Mentally tough people don't focus on the possible rewards that may await them at the end of a challenge. Instead, they see participating and overcoming challenges as rewarding in and of themselves.

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Scientists are continually finding links between genetics and nutrition. Many of us have a gene called FTO that makes us more likely to be overweight. You can get a genetic test to tell which variant of the FTO gene you happen to have.

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Nutritional Genetic Testing

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But afte...

Dealing With Uncertainty
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  • Grow from it: View uncertainty as an opportunity to grow. Welcome it on the path to personal growth.

Turning Anxiety into Excitement

Pre-race nerves are common, even amongst professional athletes. 

Reframe nerves as excitement. When we do this, we harness heightened perception to raise ourselves up. 

Instead of telling yourself, “I’m anxious, I need to calm down,” tell yourself, “I am excited, my body is primed to perform.

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Uncomfortable situations

Besides the well-known health advantages, in a world where comfort is king, arduous physical activity provides a rare opportunity to practice embracing uncomfortable situations.

Exercise is a keystone habit

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Research in psychology and neuroscience suggests that believing in meritocracy makes people more selfish, less self-critical, and more prone to acting in discriminatory ways.

Multiple studies found that subjects who are made to believe that they had won based on skill made them more prone to be tolerant of unequal outcomes. By contrast, remembering the role of luck increased generosity.

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