Back in March, I began the pre-training for a marathon this December. You may or may not be aware that I kind of fell off the horse around the middle of May. I continued running, but definitely not at the same intensity. Me and failure are not friends! Especially when I have nobody to blame but myself. But, because running a marathon is something I really want to do, I decided to buck up and start again. After all, failure is only the opportunity to begin again more intelligently, right? So I decided to reflect on the reasons I quit the first time around and here's what I realized:
1. I went at it alone. As much of a self-starter as I am, it can still be really tough to keep it up when you get tired, busy and just plain unmotivated. So I have enlisted some friends and family members for encouragement and accountability. And I will hopefully have a few people running it with me!
2. I had no short term goals to get me to my long term goal. Everyone knows that in goal setting you have to create benchmarks in order to keep yourself focused. So I've planned various 5k's, 10k's and a half marathon along the way to keep me excited. My first 10k is next Thursday!
3. And finally, I was too hard on myself! I tend to have the 'all-or-nothing' mentality, so when I missed a run I got really bummed and felt like the week was a total failure. What I should have realized is that there will be times when I miss a run or I get sick and have to take a few days off, but the important thing is to bounce right back!
This Saturday will mark the end of my first month of training. I'm still full of that energy and vigor, but because I know it will start getting harder in the upcoming weeks as my runs get longer and more difficult, I can prepare myself.
During our visit to Indiana last month I was really inspired by my Aunt Lyn who just ran her first marathon. She said something to me that was so simple but has really stuck with me. She said, "Determination will take you places you may not even dare to venture otherwise. So if you set a goal for yourself there is only one thing to do...get there, whatever it takes.". I am the only person who can either get myself to the finish line or give up. It's my choice.
Wish me luck as I once again attempt to get here~