In terms of running, it’s been a pretty epic start to the year. It’s the second week of February, and I’ve run 4 races and got myself 4 PBs. (10km, 5km, half marathon, and 10km again.) It’s a phenomenal achievement, it is. And of course, I feel proud. However, it was right in the middle of all of this that I realised that while PBs are awesome, they’re not what it’s all about. At least for me.
For me, running is about the people you meet, the places you go (physically and figuratively) and the journeys you take getting there. Running has quite literally taken me places I’d not been before; up hills in Iceland, down the waterfront in Lisbon, across beaches in Scotland, along the Norfolk and Suffolk coast, and to hotel gyms around the globe (to name just a few.) But more than that, it has taken me to the pinnacle of elation, and the depths of despair. Sometimes only moments apart.
In fact, I’d go so far as to say, that over the past 4 years, I’ve learnt more about life from running than from any other singular information source.
Here’s what running has, so far, taught me:
- Sometimes, getting to the start can be the hardest part.
- Your mind gives up long before your body ever will.
- It’s not a question of if you can do it. It’s a question of if you want to.
- Nothing is impossible.
- And, you are stronger than you think
- But, disappointment is, at times, inevitable.
- There’s no shame in failure, only in how you handle it.
- ‘This too will pass.’ 100km ended. This will too.
- Keep putting one foot in front of the other. If you continue to take baby steps in the right direction, you’ll get there eventually.
- Hard work pays off in the long run (no pun intended!)
- But, patience is key.
- It’s a marathon not a sprint. Do things today that will benefit you in the future.
- Comparing yourself to others is the singularly most self-destructive thing you can do.
- Set goals, and no matter how long it takes, don’t give up until you’ve accomplished them.
- Rest when you need to rest. Ultimately, it’ll improve performance.
- The scarier, and/or the tougher something seems, the more worthwhile it is.
- Life, like a race, is not really about the destination. It’s about the journey you take to get there.
It’s taken me a long time to get around to writing this. I’m not even sure if it entirely makes sense! But, if you feel so inclined, drop me a line and let me know what running has taught you.
In the meantime, I’ll be over here, intermittently training and panicking. My second marathon, Brighton 2018, is now only 8 weeks away!