In this episode of the Magness and Marcus Podcast we discuss a quality that all runners aspire to and all coaches try to engender. The ability to dig down, fight your way through adversity, bounce back from failure, and show up consistently when it counts. As runners, we might refer to this as toughness, but in the research world it’s referred to as Grit.

Jon and I go through the latest research and thinking in developing grit. From establishing high standards of excellence to developing passion and persistence. Starting with getting away from the notion that we have to ‘feel good’ at all times to compete and creating racing situations where athletes are forced to rise to the competition even if they don’t feel perfect. It’s about sticking yourself in situations where you’re not sure you’re going to run well. Getting away from this search for perfect conditions and perfect feeling is a way we can teach the athletes to develop grit.

As always, we go on a few tangents, talking about the disservice of rabbeted races and how it engages only a small portion of our racing skill, but the overall theme of this podcast is how to create anti fragile runners. We’ll take you through a few common coaching practices that may work in the short term, but creates fragile athletes in the long term.

If you want to learn how to develop toughness, resiliency, and grit in your athletes, give this episode a listen!

We hope you enjoy this podcast, if you are a regular listener, venture over to iTunes and rate it for us. It helps us to be able to keep delivering this content to you guys regularly!


Steve and Jon

Resources Mentioned:
Grit by Angela Duckworth


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    1. Ken Posner on June 9, 2016 at 2:27 pm

      Thank you, I thought this was a very good discussion. appreciated your perspective from working with high-level athletes and how they sometimes struggle, as well as African vs US cultural differences. “are you nuts, I haven’t done the training, I don’t feel great, I can’t do this” — I hear this from young people sometimes, and it’s just fear of failure. and sometimes I make the same excuses!

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