As I watched the NYC Marathon this past Sunday, I thought back to my participation in two marathons and some lessons I took away from that experience.
Running. A Different Perspective.
When I ran I finished both races in around six hours, and believe it or not, for the longest time I was down on myself for being so slow. Then a person who only wished they could run a marathon helped me to see things from a different perspective.
That fact that I had a dream and the fact that I did what I had to do and stayed the course to complete my goal made me a success. I actually finished two marathons in my forties when folks told me that couldn’t do it! This taught me that finishing is the key and that as long as you complete what you started out to do, you are a winner.
NYC Marathon Results.
Another important thing I took away from my marathon days was that things are not always as they appear. Women’s winner Mary Keitany lingered behind the frontrunners for the longest time until she picked her spot and began easing towards the front. In fact, both Mary Keitany and second place finisher, Jemima Sumgong, were not in the top 5 for much of the race. But these women had a plan, stuck to it, and never gave up! If you were to judge their performance simply on the early part of the race, you may have thought they didn’t have a chance. Again, it’s the end result that counts!
Then there was Kurt Fearnley, who once again finished first in the Wheelchair Division. Kurt was born with a defect that prevented parts of his spine from forming, but has still managed to become a world-class athlete. How easy would it have been for him and all the other athletes competing to say – “I can’t do this?” How many of us simply give up before we even try?
Although the road may be very difficult and things may take longer than we would like, the fact is we can do anything we want only if we are willing to try. Watching the race on Sunday reinforced my realization that our goals are much like the marathon. It’s not how you start but how you finish, regardless of how long it takes.
Until next time, I’m Francine Ward, attorney, coach, author, and speaker. I invite you to join my conversation on my Esteemable Acts Fan page, Esteemable Acts Twitter feed, or in one of my LinkedIn Groups.