Here I go with another sports analogy. And an appropriate one as I’m sure we have heard the saying “life is a marathon not a sprint.” Today was the Boston Marathon which led me to think about how racing such a challenging distance is like life. Life like a marathon is not easy but we find a way to make it through.
We are faced with many obstacles and adversity much like runners face in a marathon. We may rush through a day and forget things or make a mistake or not enjoy a moment because we are going too fast. If you’re a runner you know how awful it is if you start out too fast and fade and hurt and regret that you pushed it too hard early.
Other days we may be dragging and moving too slow and not accomplish what we had set out to do. Sometimes we just don’t have it in a race and we can’t turn it on and finish at the time or place we were aiming for.
Some days we stumble and fall and have to find a way to pick ourselves up. During today’s marathon one of the women in the lead pack fell towards the end of the race and had to get right back up and sprint to get back to the pack and she did! We can’t just stay on the ground when we slip or get tied up, we have to keep going.
The lead female wheelchair racer got a flat tire in the second half of the race. She quickly worked to get a new tire on and still won the race. We never know when a flat tire or another obstacle can slow us down during a day. We have to be try to stay calm and respond to the the challenge as best as we can.
Some days we feel great and cruise through a day like those times we are hitting our pace and feel good while we race. Other days are a struggle and we can’t wait for the day to be over. I’m sure all runners have had at least one of those races that is painful and a struggle and the finish line can’t come soon enough.
No matter what happens the last day or race we like up and do it all over again. We often get those butterflies in our stomach as we anxiously wait the starter’s gun or start of the day and what that will bring.
Like a marathon, we train for our jobs and hope to execute what we have prepared for. Some days we nail it, other days we may struggle through but we finish.
Good health is important in racing and in life. We may do all we can to prevent injury or illness but it can still happen. We may have to miss some races and training to heal or take some time off to get ourselves better.
Part of success in racing and in life is luck. Things line up for us and we get what we were hoping for. Other times we may not be so lucky. But that’s why we keep training and working because we never know what to expect. Life is full of twists and turns much like a race.
Some race days have perfect conditions, others are miserable. (I’ll never forget Des Linden winning in 2018 on a cold, windy and rainy day.) Regardless what the weather is or what conditions we are faced with it at work, we have to do our best to adjust to what we are faced with.
The Boston Marathon is known for its hills and much like this course life presents us with many up hill battles. The hills are not easy but we know if we push through and get over them things will get easier.
Marathons are long, tough races that require a great deal of strength and training. Life is much the same. All we can do to have success in both life and a marathon is to do our best when when we toe up to the line. Some races and days are easy, others are a struggle. There are challenges we face, some we expect, others are a surprise and we do our best to adjust to the conditions we are faced with. And whether it’s the start of a race or the start of our day we do the best we can to cross that finish line in the best position we can.
A marathon is painful but full of the highest of highs (thanks to all those endorphins released!). And isn’t life the same?
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