Visualization is a key concept many coaches employ when trying to encourage their teams, and it's something most running guides offer as advice for runners everywhere: Visualize yourself succeeding, and most likely you will succeed. But when I run, I often employ a totally different method of visualization (some might substitute the words "day dream" for visualization). I like to picture myself at some point in the future encountering an ex-boyfriend and I want one of two things to happen: One, I look totally awesome and he's beating himself on the side of the head for letting me go, or Two, I want to beat him at a race.
This second one doesn't seem as plausible as the first, but it's actually one of my favorites. I like to imagine a 5 or 10K we're both running, and I let him have the lead most of the way, but the last mile I sneak up on him and then in the last 100 yards or so, I pass him by, and I'm so fast that he hardly knows it's me who whooshed past. And then he sees that I have beat him, and he is humiliated, and I am triumphant (maybe I even get a medal or a trophy or something). It's a nice little fantasy. No ex-boyfriends run, that I know of, and my chances of ever meeting up with one of them are slim, the chances get even slimmer to race against one, and I am living in a complete dream to believe I would be capable of beating one.
But still, it works well for motivational purposes. I have someone in particular I like to imaginary race. In real life, he would totally win. But in my "visualization," I totally smoke him.