The last thing I dreamt of doing was WALKING the last half of my marathon as there were hundreds of children lining the street to cheer while a mariachi band played festive music, and bystanders waved poster boards with motivational quotes along the path. If that wasn’t enough, there was a stunning view of the ocean by my side… everything that day was designed to “pump up” the athletes and inspire them to keep running strong.
But I was walking.
And as I walked along, all I could think about was taking off my sweat-ridden shoes to plop down on a bed, park bench, or even ground and going to sleep. Call me crazy, but the other picture I had in my head before the race kind of resembled me prancing effortlessly down a yellow brick road, dishing our air fives and taking in thousands of people cheering my name.
Back to reality. I got what I asked for.
As I WALKED, I had used up all of my favorite positive thinking sayings and found myself just wanting to be finished. Anything was better than how I felt at that moment. This is not exactly how I envisioned the finish line of this race feeling like.
Back in July, I wrote a blog about finding your finish line. I predicted that I could possibly have 5 ironman races canceled in 2020. That did happen. While disappointed, I kept training day after day and then surprisingly, I was awarded entry into two races to close out the racing season.
Back to the race.
I did not train for 12 months and spend money traveling to WALK during my race.
You, in the beginning of 2020, did not plan for it to start with an impeachment trial, a global pandemic, attacks by killer bees, a record-setting hurricane season, social unrest and protests…and my list is just warming up.
The heart behind the first blog in July was to remind you that regardless of Life’s circumstances, that you have a finish line in your life that you are meant to pursue. I wanted to encourage you to remember that finish lines in life are temporary, but the person we become in the process will last forever. In other words, if we set out to do something, anything, you can’t lose. Even if it means WALKING. This theory was confirmed while you guessed it, I was WALKING.
As I kept WALKING closer to the finish line, I realized that at the end of the finish line, there will be a time to measure my performance, but at the end of the day, the only thing that will have mattered is that I gave my best and finished.
Finisher t-shirts do not have your personal stats on them. They just say finisher.
If I were being truly honest, with whatever decision we choose, there will be pain: the pain of regret and not trying or the pain that WILL be involved in going after your dream.
So, here’s the deal. Either way, going after your finish line in life is going to be messy, hard, awesome, exhilarating, difficult, long, you fill in the blank _____________ You might even have to WALK.
But I’ve got to tell you, crossing the finish line for the 11th time was absolutely worth every agonizing and glorious moment! Just ask my kids. They might even tell you that their daddy won the race 🙂
It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.