There is a lot we can learn from a 10K run.
Let me share with you my small and imperfect win of the summer. It has helped me to reflect on life and what we can all do to support our goals.
I ran 10K for the first time in my life at the age of 53!
I know that for many people this wouldn’t be much of an accomplishment, but for me it was a very important one. As I trained for it I reflected on the tools that I was using to achieve a goal that once seemed out of reach for me.
I grew up in a very active family but I have never been good at sports. I came to believe that I just didn’t have the athletic gene the way that my siblings did. I definitely did not think that running was for me.
For years I have wondered why some people love running so much. My curiosity led me to think about trying to run 10K. Time passed and though I would run a little I never felt that I was even close to that goal.
Last April I decided that this would be the summer for me to conquer a goal that felt like a big stretch. I approached it using some of the tools that I have developed in my coaching practice:
1. I gave myself a clear goal with a deadline.
I signed up for a 10K run at the end of June.
2. I used what I have learned works for me in other areas.
I wanted support and accountability. I let others know of my intention which made it more real.
3. I needed something or someone to walk me through the small steps.
I downloaded an app that would tell me exactly what to do, breaking it down into small steps. The app also became my cheerleader, sending me encouraging and positive notes when I felt overwhelmed and wanted to stop.
4. I needed to stay in the moment.
A playlist helped to keep me in the moment. I used music that was uplifting or had inspirational lyrics that would help to keep me going.
5. I worked on my internal self-talk.
I learned to replace negative self-talk (“I can’t do this” or “I’m so tired”) with positive messages reminding myself to breathe into my muscles and keep going.
6. I reminded myself not to compare myself to others but to focus on my own small personal wins
When someone passed me going much faster than I was I reminded myself that this was about me and my own small personal wins.
7. The important of celebrating wins and milestones.
I celebrated every milestone that I was able to achieve and I was happy about every small improvement. I tried to focus on what I had already accomplished rather than on how much more I had to do.
8. Accepting that starting is the hardest step.
I reminded myself of the 5 minute rule. Just start and keep going, five minutes at a time, until you find your pace and concentration.
9. Knowing the why.
I knew why I wanted to do it. It was not for anyone else or because it would be a huge success. It was something to help me feel stronger and something that was outside of my comfort zone.
On the day of the race I did not feel fully prepared. Due to unexpected travels and a bout with COVID I was never able to run more than 7K. I had to decide whether to postpone or to accept that nothing goes as planned and we are never quite as ready as we wish to be when doing things that are outside of our comfort zone.
I went for it.
I started slowly and within minutes I was at the back of the running crowd, but I kept on going. I constantly reminded myself that this was for me, and that if I needed to walk at some points that was okay. It didn’t have to be a perfect attempt.
When I hit the 9K mark and was feeling exhausted the song Girl On Fire came on and pushed me forward. It was slow and imperfect but I accomplished what was important to me.
The mindset we create for ourselves permits us to do things that are
One step at a time we can achieve the goals that are important to us.
What goals are you trying to reach? Are you unsure of what steps to take to get there? Please reach out and let’s talk about moving towards your goals.
Let me help you find your way forward.