"There is no such thing as a 'self-made' man. We are made up of thousands of others. Everyone who has ever done a kind deed for us, or spoken one word of encouragement to us, has entered into the make-up of our character and of our thoughts, as well as our success."
Well, race day is officially tomorrow!! Hard to think this day would ever come. I didn’t really keep up with the blogging like I had planned but I wanted to wrap it up by saying thank you to everyone who has helped me along the way. My pals at WGVU and the coaches at Gazelle Sports have been instrumental in my success. And of course I could never have made it this far without the support of my friends and family. I never thought I would hear myself say this, but I actually feel ready to take on the race and am really excited! I’ve had so much fun I even publically committed to running a full marathon in October (Yes, I have in fact lost my mind). I do hope to keep up the bogging on behalf of WGVU Engage to keep you updated on the scholarship fund and everything else we are working on.
The scholarship fund is just starting to approach the $12,000 mark which is amazing when you think we were only around $1700 when we started. There are some other events coming up that will help to fund the remaining amount which I will be sure to tell you about in upcoming weeks!
For now I would like to leave with you some of the things I have learned along this journey. . .
The Top 10 Things I Learned While Running That Have Nothing To Do With Running:
10. If it scares the hell out of you, do it. . .whatever it is. Life is too short to be scared.
9. You will never get anywhere if you stay in your comfort zone. How do you expect to learn and grow if you just do what is easy. Life is not meant to be easy, it’s meant to be lived. Although they go fast, God willing, we have a lot of years, why waste them doing what’s easy and normal. Jump out of the box and live a little.
8. Experiences are worth so much more than things. I used think a new shirt or shoes could make me happy. . .and they can. But climbing a mountain, sitting on the beach with a friend, or running along the river can bring me genuine joy. Happiness is good. Deep down, radiating joy is better.
7. Don’t forget the past but don’t dwell in it. Your past is a part of you and as soon as you can accept that, you can move on.
6. Sometimes other people see something in you that you just can’t see yourself. Believe them. And if they give you a compliment, say thank you. We are our own worst enemies and sometimes we really need to see ourselves through someone else’s eyes to gain prospective.
5. Just keep going. When you think you can’t keep going, do it anyways. Cry, scream, yell (hello mile 14) but keep going. What’s at the end is so much more than what you are experiencing in that particular moment.
4. You are the one living your life. You have to deal with your choices on a daily basis. Don’t let what others expect of you to force you into something you don’t want. Maybe your decisions don’t make a lot of sense to the rest of the world. Well, the rest of the world’s decisions don’t always make a lot of sense either.
3. Relax. Seriously, we all need to slow down, take a deep breath and relax a little. Not everything has to happen this minute and the world will not end if you don’t get exactly what you want the minute you want it. In general people are in a hurry, uptight, and cranky. Just relax. So you have to wait an extra minute for your coffee or for a train to go by. Enjoy the sun or start a conversation with the other person waiting. Not everything needs to be a big deal.
2. What you get out of your body is a direct reflection of what you put in it. I don’t think we take nutrition seriously enough. I’m not talking about dieting or counting calories. I’m talking about really knowing what you are putting in your body. It not only affects your physical well being but your mental as well. We are made to eat food, not chemicals or processed junk that resembles food, or pills that are full of who knows what.
1. You cannot get through life alone. I used to think I could do everything myself and I actually had myself fooled that that’s the way I liked it. Well, that’s just not the way it works. If you want to get further and you want to enjoy the journey, you have to let others in. And it needs to be in a genuine, authentic manner. Let people see the worst of you, let them see the best, and let them help. People aren’t as judgemental as you think and if you are willing, they can better you in a way you never imagined.
OK so maybe I have 11 things. My final, and what I think is most important, thing is to really live life with a purpose. Between talking about why the scholarship is so important to me and training for the run, I have really learned to make each moment count. We can float around day to day doing whatever is needed or we can set out to do something great. Everyone should be passionate about something. Passion makes the days worth waking up for and purpose makes the tedious worth doing. Our passions and purposes might change day to day, year to year but those are two things that can really make everything else worthwhile.