Life in 14 seconds

I believe God made me for a purpose, but he also made me fast. And when I run I feel His pleasure.

Eric Liddell in Colin Welland’s Chariots of Fire

I will raise my eyes and look down that corridor; 4 feet wide, with 10 lonely seconds to justify my whole existence. But WILL I?

Harold Abrahams in Colin Welland’s Chariots of Fire

I’m sorry it’s been so long since I have written. Marathon season came in earnest and I got busy at work as well.  Since I last wrote, I have run two marathons—Baltimore and New York.  I ran a personal best in Baltimore which prompted me to try to qualify for Boston in the NYC Marathon. While I ran another personal best, I was 14 seconds slow of a qualifying time. I often reflect on life when I run and am now wishing I kept better notes on those streams of thought that dance in my head between the periods of misery and bliss in my body. In some ways the list below feels trite to me, but I must say I also find a lot of truth in it. So, a few thoughts on life learned from marathons:
  1. Set goals and come up with a strategy for achieving them
  2. Let yourself believe
  3. Work hard but take time to nurse your wounds
  4. Most races are an internal challenge, not a competition against others
  5. There’s always someone faster than you (and by someone I mean 1,981 people)
  6. Therefore, don’t pay any attention to what those around you are doing—run your own race
  7. It hurts, but it will heal in time
  8. Sometimes you can smile through the pain, sometimes you can’t—but smile when it’s over no matter how much it hurts
  9. Those who love you most will be in your cheering section, no matter where they are on race day
  10. Regardless of how you finish, only you can decide whether you won or lost
  11. Near misses are more painful in the short run but still satisfying in the long run
  12. The race is chock full of information, particularly about yourself—learn what you can and move on
  13. It’s a long race but there is also a time to sprint
  14. Every 14 seconds matters
  1. Great, great list. Here’s a few I try to hold onto:

    -What you do is not who you are.
    -Without music, you’ll have a shallow horrible existence.
    -Sometimes believing is as good as knowing.

    Thanks for the blog, dude! Keep it up!

  2. Love the 14 seconds. One more- savor each breath.

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