Today I set out on a run and the mission of the run was to run further than I have in my past runs. I wasn't trying to set a PR for mile pace, my goal was to run further than I normally do, and finish. I didn't know how far I was going, I just knew the course I had mapped out would be further than my other runs, and off I went.
I was cruising along and then I heard the voice come through my headphones from my map my run app telling me my distance and time and I just kept going because everything was still easy. At the next interval I heard the same thing, but at this point I was starting to get a little tired and I knew it was a long way back home and my mind started to tell me I had gone too far, this is too much, but I just kept pushing. I practice positive thinking on a daily basis, meaning that when negative thoughts creep in, I recognize them and replace them with positive ones. I also name this voice and I visualize this voice as a real person in order to talk to him. At this interval I simply said to him "excuse me, I have to keep going, I have a goal and I have come to far to stop now", and off I went.
I kept running and the voice came through my headphones again with the time and distance and this time it was the distance I normally run, but I was nowhere close to my house and again, I was tired. You know the feeling when your chest is burning and your legs get heavy and you wouldn't mind stopping. At this very moment guess who appeared again? That little man, and he was trying to high five me and tell me I have done enough, I have accomplished my goal, I have gone as far as I alwasy go and that is good enough", but I looked at him and said "excuse me sir, today I am going beyond the normal, today I am pushing past average, and today I am going to the next level", but he insisted saying "STOP, you are good enough". Again, I know better, I know good enough never is, so I politely said "excuse me sir, I have to keep going, I have come to far to stop now" and I off I went. This time he was mad at me, he gave me a look I never see from him becaue he knew my legs were tired and my chest was burning, and my breathing became a little tough to control, and was upset he couldn't convince me to quit, but I knew, and I know that your mind will quit before your body does, so he was ready to quit but I moved him aside, and off I went.
As I trekked on, I heard the voice again, time and distance and I began to think to myself, wow, this is great, you have accomplished, and the voice came to me again and he said, "see, I was right, you are done, you do not want to go any further, you have accomplished so stop, you are tired and sore". But I just kept saying I started and I have to finish because that is what I do, I am a competitor and I have been here before, and like before I will pass out before I quit" and I kept on.
Then as I entered the home stretch and I continued to get more tired I saw an elderly man walking at a slow clip and slightly hunched over like life was winning the battle against his body. I waved to him and he could barely lift his arm high enough to wave back and all of a sudden this feeling came over me and I was no longer tired at all. Although I had been using my positive thought training to get me through this run, I now used an outside form of motivation to help me finish this run, because in the moment I saw the man walking I realized I did not have to finish the run, I get to finish the run. I thought about how the man was unable to run and I am fortunate to be able to run whenever I like and I just kept thinking to myself you do not have to finish this run, but you get to finish this run so take advantage of the things you get to do while you are still able to do them.
We all need to understand that in life we get to do things and we must learn to take advantage of those things because one day we will no longer be able or we will simply no longer get to do them. I got a chance to play pro baseball, and each game I played as though I would never play another game, because there was a posibility that was true; one day I would no longer get to play pro baseball. Your perception and thoughts will shape your life, so make sure both are positive.