"By concentrating INTENSELY on what you desire and fueling that passion, you can fill your mind with it and actually “go blind” to all else. There is one huge caveat to this mindset: your training must be FLAWLESS. Wanting it is not enough. Let me explain.

The perfect mindset (what is going on in your head) prior to and during a maximal effort is...NOTHING. A giant burst of WHITE LIGHT that blinds everything, including your ego! This is not rage; this is a calm CERTAINTY of what WILL HAPPEN. It is the assuredness of a reality that is just around the corner. In your mind, you are empty, and in this situation, ALL THINGS CAN HAPPEN. You make room for what you want to occur. You must let go of everything but your desire. It alone remains, and hence there is only ONE reality that is forthcoming. You must “get out of your own way.”

“You” become small, and your desire becomes big. You actually stop thinking and just feel the desire. Thoughts give way to a clear-headedness that is difficult to describe. But it has been famously described in the literature as the “flow state.” Lots of athletes have reported it from lots of different sports. The interesting thing that they all speak of is that they are NOT TRYING! They are just doing. They are NOT THINKING. They are just doing. If you want a better description, you can look up Mikal Czmen and his work on flow.

But this “trying by NOT trying” is in congruence with plenty of Eastern philosophies. Taoism in particular. It seems that people have known about it for at least 6,000 years! It is a very hard pill to swallow for Western minds. But don't pass judgment too quickly. Perhaps you have brushed up against it already in your own sporting life. It is like when you have a game or day that everything goes right and your sport seems comically easy. You wonder why it has been so hard thus far. Your every move is golden. You can't miss."

elitefts coach & columnist @j.m.blakley