While I was out for my hot, humid, hilly run this morning, I was thinking about some of my ever-changing, running related goals. I was really trying to keep my mind off of the fact that it was SO humid and stifling out and I let my mind wander to some NON- running related goals from years past as well.
Some of my non-running related goals from my REALLY younger days were quite unrealistic and make me burst out laughing when I think about them today!! REALLY? I wanted to be a go-go dancer in NYC?? Hey...to be fair...my friend's sister was a go-go dancer and it sounded really glamorous (and easy) at the time!!
Running related My first race was a 10K in Atlanta--over 30 years ago and my only goal for that race was to live through the hilly run so that I could get my hands on my friend who had convinced me to run without any training! "NO HILLS" she said, "It'll be FUN" she said!!! It was hot/hilly/horrible---and yet, I couldn't wait to do it again?!!
When I ran my first marathon in Chicago (I think it was 1997?), my goal was to finish and hopefully do it in under 5:30 hours. Along with my good friend (and mean trainer!) Marilou, I really trained for this one! I lost 20 pounds, built up my pace from a 12 min mile to just over an 8 min mile over a few months time and felt really good at the start! Even with some bathroom issues and not having water at some of the later water stops---we finished in just over 5:20!
There have been so many other goals over the years--some running related--some not. Some of the goals I attained--some not. As crushed as I have been sometimes over not reaching certain goals that I have set for myself, I have ALWAYS gained wisdom from the experience. I think that one of the most important lessons I have learned (aside from the fact that although you CAN run a marathon with only an 8 mile long run under your belt--that doesn't mean you SHOULD run a marathon with only an 8 mile long run!!), is that the goal, although important itself--isn't NEARLY as important as the fact that one is STILL setting goals and STILL trying to attain them!
I am not saying that we should just set goals without really making an all out effort to reach those goals. I am saying that sometimes the obstacles that get in our way are too big to ignore. Sometimes we have to re-evaluate the situation and change our plans, whether due to injury, illness or just the fact that sometimes "$hit happens" in life, and we should be flexible enough to make changes in our goals without getting too down on ourselves!
My goals are ever-changing, but my determination remains constant--I will NEVER give up on setting new goals and I will NEVER give up on myself! As C.S. Lewis said----