Effort = Achievement

author : TryingATri
comments : 1

Wow. It seems a bit late in life to be learning this lesson, but I guess late is better than never, right?

A little background: I was that student, and that young athlete, that had everything just kinda come naturally to them. I did not really have to put forth much effort to earn decent results. I suppose because of this, I never really had to learn the concept of working towards a goal. It's not that I would not have if I had to - but - I just didn't have to. I don't want to paint the picture of someone that put forth no effort or was lazy, I did put effort into sports and school work - as I enjoyed them both - but I never found a time that I truly struggled (except in math - UGH!). In sports I quite frequently was chosen as one of the "3 Stars" of the game due to my sheer enthusiasm and love for what I was doing.

As I got older, however, and things did not come as naturally to me, I actually started to believe that if I could not do something on the first attempt, I simply was not meant to do it. I did not realize that you could actually improve upon your first effort. I did not realize that with each (in this case) training session, one could improve. It seems like, so obvious? But apparently I did not get it. 

The good news is - I'm getting it now! Life, with all its challenges and pitfalls, is not nearly as easy as when I was a kid, but I'm slowly realizing that all the dreams I had as a child, I can still have as an adult. With hard work and training - I can still achieve them!

My first attempt at something is not what defines me, but it's my last attempt at something that truly defines who I am.

Did I work harder?
Did I push more?
Am I learning something new with each training session?
Can I go to bed proud of the effort I put forth that day?
Did I see an improvement, either in time, or in feeling?

In just the two and a half weeks that I've really been training and following Coach Lube's schedule, I've seen my running numbers improve so dramatically! (Having a Garmin has also changed my world. I tend to wear it even around the house now. Watching my HR during day-to-day activities just enthralls me. But I'm also a bit of a weirdo.)

I thought that I'd never be a runner, because any of my first attempts at running had always been weak.  Normally, old me, after trying that first run, I would simply not do it again...or would wait months to try it again, figuring I just would never be able to do it. That first run was always so discouraging. And true to form - my first run on Lube's schedule was so discouraging (and quite embarrassing to report to a dude that just finished a 1/2 marathon in 1hr11min!)

My first run was almost all walk. I could not run more than 20 or 30 seconds without hearing my entire body scream "stop!" My time was horrible. But I just kept repeating to myself that it would not always be this way. I can't lie, I really did not believe those words when I said them to myself after the first run. I was still somewhat convinced that because I could not do the day one run - I'd never be able to run. But, what was different this time was that instead of being discouraged, I still went out and tried run 2...and run 3...and run 4....and I kept seeing improvements!

In just two and a half weeks I have shaved an approximate two and half minutes off my average speed per mile. Furthermore, I also actually enjoy running now (what?!?!) and find myself looking forward to the run workouts - especially the interval work! I'm still slow as molasses when compared to the rest of my team, but I know with continued work, with continued effort, I will continue to improve!

At the end of October I have the LA Rock & Roll 1/2 Marathon. The day I signed up, in the back of my head, I really thought "Why are you even signing up? Who are you kidding? You're just gonna end up walking most of it." Now, only a few weeks into training, I'm feeling pretty good about being able to run the whole dang thing...and maybe even put up a respectable time!

Deirdre

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date: March 22, 2013

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TryingATri

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