Often we find ourselves at a cross roads in life.
I never thought about it much until this journey began. I was always taking the road that was easier to see. I would always go where it looked like I could walk easily. Often that road did not make me happy but it did make life seem less complicated.
Then 2 years ago my journey began. I stepped foot on another foreign road and made the commitment to take it for as long as I could handle. That road has led me to the healthy path I am currently on. About 2 months ago I once again was faced with a new road, that of a tougher marathon training plan. I decided I would go for the bumpy ride and hope to hang on.
It has been an interesting adventure to say the least. I run more miles during the week than I ever have before. Last week the tally peaked at 55 miles. By Sunday when I had my 20 miler I was tired. It was actually quite a rough run yesterday.I began to doubt the entire plan and my body and its capabilites.
I began to wonder why the heck I wanted to train so hard and what I really would accomplish by the end of it all. I was running and about mile 14 I thought I would stop. I contemplated it for a half mile, thinking of what it would be like to just stop and rest. It would feel good of course. Then I thought about what qualifying for Boston would feel like. I really stopped and thought about that feeling. I realized then that stopping during my long run, or giving up on this tougher training plan would feel good but not as good as qualifying for Boston.
The instant gratification we get from quitting ever comes close to the feeling of finishing something. But it is hard, we live in such a harried rushed society that we are always looking for the instant gratification. It takes patience and diligence to wait patiently and work hard for a reward that may be weeks or months away.
So when on a long run I try to remind myself of that. I think about how I felt when I was obese, and how long it took to get healthy. I think about the reward of fitting into new clothes, airline seats, and being medication free. I think about all of those things and remember it did not happen instantly. Those took over a year to achieve. And then I remember the most important thing, it was all worth it.