Posted by Sherry Roit on Thursday, March 17, 2016 Under: opinion piece
Went for a run just now. Third day in a row, after having run once a week for the last three weeks. I thought to myself, self? Just an easy run today. Right calf is a bit stiff, you will be lucky to make two miles. But two miles is good, and it's better than no miles.
So I'm out doing my thing. It's a lovely, sunny day. I'm sore, but not enough to allow myself to stop. I say to self, self? Get that first mile. Okay, got it. Surely we can get that second. Sure...okay. Let's do it.
So I did it, and I thought hey, cool. Now back up a moment-- At one point during mile two, I wondered about this hill I just finally conquered about four weeks ago. I only attempt it once a week. 95 foot gain, steeper on the second half. I'd already done it once this week. But I was on that particular route, and had a wild idea. I thought, well...can I do the hill?
No, surely not. I'm sore. It's day three. Still, I tell ya what, self. We have to come back around that way anyway. Could start up it. If we stop and walk, no big deal.
Forward, back to that moment I was just talking about, end of mile two. Little over, actually. I started up the hill, telling myself hey, if I even make halfway, that's pretty cool.That's killer! No shame in walking out the rest. I already made my two mile "take it easy" day. Do it. Yeah, let's do it.
Got halfway. Thought wow, cool. How about three-quarters? That fire hydrant, right up there. You know the one. Right before the steepest part of this sucker. The really, REALLY hard part where everyone wants to quit. You could do it...
Hi fire hydrant. Bye fire hydrant.
Holy shit. Almost there. You can do it, you can do it, don't stop. OW OW OW, no no, kick it out, almost there, almost...faster now because...
OH MY GOSH YOU DID IT!
Yeah. I win! Suck it, hill!
So what's the point of this little tale? As you may have guessed from the title alone, goals. But not just any goals. Bite size goals. See, we always read about, and hear about, big goals. Lofty goals. And while I admire people who have them, and even more so when they do what needs to be done to reach them, there are many who don't make it. Bite off more (in the idea) than they can chew all at once, and they are left feeling a failure. You've probably been in that situation, yourself. Because lofty can be just trying to lose ___ of weight. Finishing that book. So on and so forth. Lofty is in the eye of the beholder.
We hear about successes, but not always the "failures." If we do hear about the "failures" it's either wow, what a loser, or hey, try harder. Just try harder, try harder, try harder.
I'm trying, I'm trying, damn it!
I placed failure in quotations, because I don't believe that's always correct, or fair. Who said it was always necessary to make a BIG goal? Screw this all or nothing shit, I say. It has its place, but not if its place is to make you feel like a loser. Like someone who can never achieve a goal. You achieve goals every day, I venture, if you'd take time to notice and make note of them.
Now go back to my little tale of The Run. Notice something about it? A theme?
Small goals. One step at a time, as it were. I didn't set out with an idea that I was by gods going to run five miles and by gods go up that hill at the end and by gods, have the fastest time ever!
No. My first goal was getting my gear on and going out for a the run even though I could have made the excuse that my calf was stiff. My second goal was making a mile. The third, was mile two. The fourth...
You get the idea. You got it a while ago, savvy reader.
Do you know why I was able to make it to the top of that hill? Because I tell ya what, I don't think it was the strength in my legs, this time. They were ready to abandon me, yet I actually sped up in the last part. Why?
Making and achieving those other goals gave me power. Adrenaline. I was excited. Proud. In a happy place. I didn't feel like a loser. I hadn't told myself all or nothing. Which sometimes is more like "I didn't do all, so I'm nothing."
Bullshit. It all counts. Besides, and this might blow your mind...how do you think people make those BIG goals, anyway? They think they fail because they've got this idea they're going to leap straight to the finish line and when they don't, they give up! People, people, it doesn't work that way unless someone airlifts you to the finish line, and that's cheating!
Make some chew-able, bite sized goals and seize your day. You are not a loser. Most of the success stories you see out there, those wars? They were won a battle at a time, and some of those battles were short, and small. Messy. But they counted. Hell, there is no such thing as an over night success. Just ask my musician friends...
In : opinion piece
Tags: goals running
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