In October of 2017, I was having lunch with my wife and we were talking about things we wanted accomplish during our lifetime.
It got me thinking there was so much left to accomplish.
Running a marathon was on that list.
Filled with a sense of urgency, I took out my phone and signed up for a marathon without hesitation.
My wife didn’t believe it until I showed her the screen.
The marathon I signed up for was in five months. To be honest, I wasn’t exactly in the greatest shape. Much less any kind of running shape.
Suffice it to say that there was a lot of work to be done.
Running a marathon has been on my list for a long time, but I had never gotten around to it. After a while, it started to seem like I never would.
Like most things, it never got scheduled and I never got around to running one. I kept saying “one day”. I realized that I’ve been saying that for a long time. A really long time. Then I thought to myself what is really stopping me from doing one? It was all me. I was getting in my own way, procrastinating and making every excuse that I could think of. So, I decided to push all that aside and I signed up for my first marathon. As I prepared for the marathon, I learned a few lessons along the way.
Lesson #1: Commit
Five months of preparation was awaiting me. It was something I was looking forward to.
I started digging up training plans and reading anything I could get my hands on about marathon training and I was underway. Keep in mind, I don’t have any long distance running experience and I am far from a runner. The furthest I’ve ever ran is six miles and I walked over half of those miles. Nonetheless, I was already committed.
Lesson #2: Take it one step at a time
Once I found a training plan that suited me, I printed it out and posted it on my refrigerator, so I could see it every day. My family would see it everyday as well and I used that as a form of accountability. Looking over the plan, it seemed nearly impossible and it hit me like the first day of basic training. What the hell did I get myself into?
Day one came, and I ran. I ran on day two. I ran on day three and I kept on running keeping with the training. Logging the miles was not easy. As they say, take it one step at a time. Well, that is exactly what I did. Every time that I ran I put a big black “X” on the run I had completed. I found that with every day I was able to mark my training plan, I was inspired to run more and more.
Lesson #3: It IS possible
Over 300 miles were logged during the course of marathon training.
Plenty of 5k’s, 10k’s and a few half marathons.
If you would have told me back in November, before I signed up, that in four months time I would have completed that many distance runs and a marathon, I would have laughed at the silliness of the thought. Yet, here I am having done so.
“It always seems impossible until it’s done” —Nelson Mandela
I committed myself to running a marathon, I put in mile after mile taking it one step at a time and I didn’t quit. The approach to marathon training is not much different from other aspects of your anyone’s life. A career, studies, marriage, relationships and everything else requires you to commit to it, put in the work, and stick with it. Like me, you will find that most things that seem impossible just aren’t. You may be pushed to your limits and make you think of quitting. Don’t. Don’t quit. Don’t give up because success, success is in that extra mile.