There have been a few times in my adult life when I decided I needed to exercise more and tried running. It didn’t take too well. Eventually some reason came along to get in the way. Inconvenient to schedule due to weather or light, boring, hard to measure results, can’t seem to find the right shoes, and there’s too many other things I could be doing, including sitting on the couch.
Finally, in November of 2007 I decided to set a goal: to walk or run 1,000 miles before the following Thanksgiving. The first three months involved a lot of treadmill walking, and as the spring came along I made it out into the streets and started running. I entered a few local 5k races in the summer, and ran my first half marathon in October, the same week I reached 1,000 miles.
Then, in 2009, I didn’t do so well.
This fall I renewed my efforts, and although I don’t have a goal nearly as high as 1,000 miles, I intend to average 20,000 meters per week.
Today I got up early, and with the support of my loving wife (who entered the 5k), I ran a half marathon. Thirteen point one miles. In the middle of a relaxing, enjoyable vacation. And it was great. I didn’t match my time from the last half marathon, not even close. But I met my goal for the day – finish, running at a pace consistent with the training I put into it, without injury.
I’ve had an image of myself for a long time – I saw myself as not very athletic. But I am an athlete. I have a body that is in generally good shape, and although I am at an age where time wears away, I can bring it to a much better condition than it is today.
Don’t get locked into your image of what you are. I did that. Imagine what you want and make the plan get there!