Live Chat with Bairu, Flanagan, and Nelson

Simon Bairu, Shalane Flanagan, and Tim Nelson, three members of the Nike Oregon Project making their marathon debuts in New York on November 7, were participants in a live webchat hosted by Kimbia Athletics and New York Road Runners.

Spiked Up, Psyched Up was fortunate enough to get a question through to the three athletes.  The following are their responses:

Question for all three athletes: what kind of mental training have you had to make in order to prepare yourselves for a distance twice that you’ve ever raced?

Let’s start with “Mr. Holistic,” Tim Nelson, on this one…

Tim Nelson:
Yeah, they don’t call me the Zen Master for nothing (JK). Honestly I think the mental preparation comes with the training. If you are unable to do the workouts mentally, you probably won’t be able to handle the race.

Simon Bairu:
we’ve done a few long 15-18mile tempo runs and i just try to stay as relaxed as possible on those runs for as long as possible. being able to stay relaxed for 18miles is a big confidence booster. Race day will be hard but we’re ready!

Shalane Flanagan:
In my long runs and tempos I practice all of my mental tools that I will need for race day. I focus on staying relaxed as a long as possible, knowing I will have to be ready mentally and physically in the late stages.

So, Tim, would you say it’s just a matter of committing to the training plan?

Tim Nelson:
Yes, I’d say it’s a lifestyle commitment. You have to live healthy, get enough rest, eat well all so you are able to do the workouts. As a result, the mental preparation goes along with it.

Click here for the rest of the chat from

Tags: Nyc Marathon

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