As I was running my second 33km in a week I wonder to myself, why am I doing this? Seriously! It’s definitely not enjoyable and it’s certainly not fun, so why do marathoners do it? And, by and large, they do it more than once! (Not me by the way but other lunatics).
I started thinking about what or who motivates me. It isn’t famous runners or brilliant athletes, it’s my fellow runners. My running group is made up of people from all ages and all walks of life but we all have a common goal and that it to cross that finish line proud of ourselves and each other for having done what we thought we couldn’t.
When I am running and my Achilles tendons are screaming at me to stop, I know my running pals are suffering just as much and if they aren’t going to stop neither am I. Occasionally though the “I can’t do this” voices win and you will only run 20km instead of the scheduled 30. But when did 20km become only 20km? 20km is a long way! Drive it in your car and even then it’s a long way!
When the “I can’t do this voice” starts telling me “This is beyond you, just stop, turn around now, no one will know…” I have a few mantras I repeat to myself. My main one is “Never give up.” This was first coined by Winston Churchill (not Lorna Jane although I love her too) but Churchill is one of my all time heroes.
I love the story about Churchill where he was asked to give a speech in 1941 at his old school, Harrow School. The boys there were in total awe of him, quite rightly as they were obviously in the middle of the second world war and they were being addressed by their prime minister. The famous quote from that speech is:
“Never give in. Never give in. Never, never, never, never—in nothing, great or small, large or petty—never give in.”
One of my other heroes is Nelson Mandela and my favourite quote from him is
“It always seems impossible, until it’s done”
I love motivational quotes and so do lots of other people if facebook, pinterest and tumblr are anything to go by. Here are some of my favs
“I run like a girl, try and keep up”
“Whether it’s hard or whether it’s easy, it won’t last”
“Run when you can, walk if you have to, crawl if you must; just never give up.”
― Dean Karnazes
“The real purpose of running isn’t to win a race, it’s to test the limits of the human heart” Bill Bowerman
“There will be a day when I can no longer run…. Today is not that day”
“Run like Ryan Gosling is waiting at the finish line for you with a puppy”