In the last week we have had Halloween, another birthday, an exciting high school playoff game win, and a special baptism. Life is very blessed and lots of fun.
But this morning instead of writing about that stuff, I am going to share an email that I sent to one of the runners I coach. She sent me an email after a race in which she didn't finish in the time she had hoped for (she is coming back from injury) and one of the things she said was, "in my darker moments I feel like I
work really hard to be really average at this sport I love." Here is my response to her.
"Being completely honest - I have had the same thoughts. In
moments of weakness and frustration (after disappointing races or workouts), I have wondered why I try so hard,
put in so many miles and hours, give up so much sleep, and care so much,
to just be an average marathoner. It feels unfair sometimes to put in
all the work, do everything "right", to want it so bad, and to still
have so many others be (in my eyes) so much more successful, so much faster, so much
But the last time I had those thoughts I really stopped and thought about it, and I know in my heart that even if someone told me today that I would never set another PR, that I would keep on running. It's who I am. It's what I do.
thing is, we are never going to be professional runners. We are never
going to set world records, win Olympic medals, or be at the top of this
sport that we love. That isn't why we lace up our shoes every day. That
isn't why we run.
We run because we want to be healthy, strong, and fit. We run because we have goals and dreams. We run
because we love the feeling of our bodies working hard. We run because
we love the sound of our own rhythmic breathing and the soft pat-pat of
our feet on the ground. We run because we like to challenge ourselves,
push our limits, and see what we can accomplish. We run because nothing
beats the feeling of finishing a good run. We run because even a bad run
is better than no run. We run because the confidence we get from doing
something we didn't think we could ever do permeates into every area of
our lives. We run because we love it. We run because we are runners.
Just because we aren't professional runners doesn't mean that
we are average though. All too often us runners define ourselves by the
number on the clock at the end of a race. PR's are amazing, but they do
not define us. What defines us is getting up every day and running, even
when we are tired, or when the weather is awful. What defines us is the
fact that we have more running shoes in our closet than dress shoes.
What defines us is our dedication and commitment through good days and
bad. What defines us is the courage to constantly challenge ourselves. What defines us is our ugly feet and funky tan lines. What defines
us is that thrill we get when we register for a race or look over a new
We may never set world records or win huge races, BUT, each
one of us has the ability to train, push, work, and become the very best
that we can possibly be, and THAT is not average. Putting your heart
and soul into something you are passionate about, pushing your limits,
and working hard to accomplish goals is exciting, inspiring, and LIVING
life. Runners are anything but average. They are awesome. :)"
Wouldn't you agree?
"Don't be ashamed or embarrased to dream BIG. You're living your life with HOPE- that's a powerful thing. -Kara Goucher