Hello and happy Monday! How are you going to make today great? What’s your motivation?
May 2, 2015 I ran my first half marathon and let me tell you… that took a lot of motivation. I did a 12 week training plan from Hal Higdon and built my mileage slowly – which I’ve heard is the key to success. I think doing something slowly and consistently was also the key to not losing motivation. 12 weeks is a long time if you think about it. When is the last time you took 12 weeks to do anything? Do it, it feels really good!
Along my 12 week training journey, since running long distance is a pretty solitary sport, I found ways to stay motivated. Motivation turned up in a few small ways; convincing myself to run to the “next lamp post”, running for a mile straight and giving myself a break, getting distracted by flowers and stopping to take a selfie just to name a few. Eventually that motivation came from my long runs on the weekends and bargaining with myself, “you ran 7 miles last week, what’s another mile to make 8?” or “if you run up this hill, you get to fly down the other side and relax.” oh and horses at mile 8!
Before my long weekend runs started at 4 miles in week one, I had only ever ran short distances. I’m talking 5ks or less. So as I went through my 12 week training plan, the motivation presented itself in personal records with every step. I only trained for 10 out of the 13.1 miles before the actual half marathon so the motivation to finish the last 3.1 was buried deep inside me – because heck, I’d already done 10 miles! At the finish line, my motivation to finish the race and accomplish a huge goal in my new life turned into an overwhelming amount of emotion. I cried, I laughed, I smiled ear-to-ear.
I’m not going to lie and say that since the half marathon I have been the most motivated runner in the world, because I haven’t. I’ve barely put on 20 miles since May. Honestly, I think the structure of the training schedule for the half got to me and having freedom to do whatever I wanted after the race stole that motivation to “keep running races because I’m already trained.” That could just be an excuse or the 80-something-degree and 80% humidity summer weather talking… have I mentioned I love winter and cold weather? Now as I get ready to start my 15k training for a race in November, it’s that finishing emotion from May that will serve as my motivation.
In life and in all things we find motivation in strange places. Motivation to lose weight, apply for a new job, buy a house, invest in a new car, talk to a stranger, finish a project – you name it. Everyone has their own goals and those goals fuel our motivation. Motivation is often rooted in positivity and the mindset to achieve our goals no matter what. That usually turns into determination. Once you have motivation and determination, you are unstoppable. It’s that “can-do” attitude that radiates from you. When people get a hint of your radiant new attitude it might just motivate them to take the next step in their goals. So grab that motivation, turn it into determination and do something phenomenal!
Question – What motivates you? Your kids? Your family?