Running through the cobblestone streets of Amsterdam, I was already seven miles into my half marathon. I still had another six miles to go, and my legs were already beginning to feel like I had a belt wrapped tightly around them. My knees were also aching, but there was no going back—I was committed to finishing the event. Plus, I knew that I could finish–I had to.
When I first decided to run my first half marathon, I had never run more than 5 miles at one time in my entire life—and I thought that was pretty good! A half marathon, on the other hand, is 13 miles.
I knew that I wanted to accomplish this goal because it scared me to commit to running this distance in a reasonable time. I’ll never forget registering for the Amsterdam Half Marathon four months before the actual event. It seemed so far away, yet I knew that I had so much training to do before then.
In order to come up with a training regiment, I did what any twenty-something would do. Googled it. Instantly, I had a great four month training plan and was ready to begin.
I was to run three to four times per week for sixteen weeks and the distances would get progressively longer as the training regiment went on. I would start with four to seven mile runs in week one and would ultimately run eight to fourteen mile training runs in the final few weeks before my event.
Here was the hard part—actually doing it. I was committed but that didn’t mean that I felt motivated everyday to go out and run. In fact, on certain days, I dreaded the thought of running. Have you ever run nine miles after a being out at a European night club until five in the morning? I have…a few times.
But, I absolutely refused to skip training runs. My biggest motivator was fear of not being able to finish the half marathon on the day of the event. I had already told everyone that I was going to run the event!
There was no turning back.
No matter how much I wanted to not train on a particular day, I forced myself to go out and run. What I discovered was that how I felt before a run had nothing to do with how the run would feel when I was actually a few miles in. Sometimes, the days when I felt terrible before a run would turn out to be my best runs! And vice versa…
It was true commitment and in many ways, the training was more rewarding than actually completing the half marathon. Since then, I run all the time. It’s become my ‘meditation’ time.
So, you know what you want and you have a good plan to get there? You’re home free!
Okay, maybe not.
Now is action-time.
You actually have to follow through on everything you said you would do and you can’t stop half way.
Here are a few tips to committing to bash through:
- Be clear on why you are committed. Have clear motivating reasons.
- Don’t expect to be motivated all the time. Just get out there and do it.
- Start off with easier tasks and then build up. Don’t overwhelm yourself.
- Make it fun. Reward yourself for doing what you have to do.
If you follow these steps, you will be amazed with your results. I promise.
What is one thing you really want to commit to doing this year? Please share below by commenting.
Written by Marc Wayshak, motivational college speaker.