Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Appreciating Where You're At

It's amazing how we can sabotage our own excitement and happiness with our accomplishments, simply by comparing ourselves to others. As I was running (and at some point past mile 11, shuffling) I kept thinking how is it that I can consider myself a 'runner'. Do I enjoy it? Yes. Have I been doing it longer than most of my friends? Yes. Am I good at? Hmmm, I guess? Could I be better? Always. Am I naturally gifted with speed? Ah No. So does it make me less of a 'runner' because I am slow? I often wonder if people think you have to be the fastest person from the start to be considered serious.

I wish I was fast, like people would be in awe of my time. Maybe it has something to do with being competitive - but really running is you against yourself. So what is my deal? Why is it that I am thinking, "You should have done better. Pushed harder. Finished sooner." - is it normal? Well if it's not, I can't say I'd be surprised...this is me we are talking about here.

Is it possible for me to just enjoy the moment? I finished a half marathon, 13.1 miles, and mentally, it was a huge obstacle and I made it. I completed it - No I didn't come in first, far far from it, but I got out there and tried, going in knowing that finishing was a goal (unrealistically I was hoping for a sub 2:30 finish, but seriously I didn't even train like I should have - not to make excuses.) and I did indeed finish.

So I guess my point is, I struggle with not excelling in all I do. I am not just a classic overachiever but the epitome of overachiever. It really does piss me off when people make comments to (or more often about & behind their back) people who run slower than they do. If there is one thing I realized this weekend, as I started out at a good pace and slowed down as time went on, whether your tall or short, heavy or twiggy, your ability to run is only impacted by your will to do so. So, no matter what your finish time is, you finished your race, completed your event, you got your hard earner bling, you should be proud of your accomplishment. You did it, and chances are - you'll do it again... happy running (no matter your pace)!

To bring it all home, appreciating where you're at (and not just in your running/training but in life) is the key to happiness. Sometimes we (I know I am guilty of it) are so focused on the "next" step - we rarely take the time to love where we are at. Honestly, right now I am at my home office desk, on vacation, in my fleece bottoms and one of my numerous race shirts, looking at this list (yes, another list!) of things to do, and loving it. I am blessed and today (as I should everyday), I am taking the time to breathe and appreciate my place in this world. I hope you are too.


  1. are soooo right! I cried when I finished my last half (which was a PR of 2:05) because I did not come in under 2 hours. I ran the first 7 miles so fast that I had to walk much of the last few miles. It did not help that DH was mad at me for walking!!! It took me weeks to learn the lesson you are talking about. I should have been proud of my accomplishment. Your message is truly inspirational :)

  2. Thanks so much for sharing this post Hope! I know I am guilty of doing this way too often when comparing myself to other runner's and their times. Thanks for reminding me that my best is just that-mine!