I just signed up for a 9.3 Mile Race. And 4 other Races in the next 4 months.
Apparently, my signs and symptoms are leading me to the following conclusion: the Running bug bit me (again).
You see, I really do not enjoy running. I enjoy sprinting, lifting, and doing other athletic pursuits that involve competition. Still, I have coached so many runners, from recreational to competitive marathon runners, that putting together a list of recommendations for a beginning runner is easy (Article HERE).
But as with golf, I find myself continually intrigued by the relationship between running, golf and life. There are lessons we must learn in life, lessons we must apply so that any mistakes will only be mistakes of the past, and lessons for our future.
With golf and running, we must learn from bad swings or bad races/runs, and make sure they never happen again. Each run, each swing, and each race, counts for something; each must be appreciated so that we don't just take each one for granted. In addition, we must learn to put a negative memory or experience behind us, and put our best foot forward. This is where I find these two sports to provide enlightenment to my life: in golf and in running, we are only as efficient or inefficient as our last swing or race.
Unfortunately, this is a huge lesson in life, one we must learn eventually adopt, because the world we live in is extremely competitive, and while it may seem like no one is keeping score, there is always someone out there comparing themselves to you and/or others. I think this is the ultimate lesson these two sports teach, to take your passion, and compare the success of that passion, whatever it may be, and compare it to your previous best or worst. THEN, by constantly striving for your own personal improvement, you will not be as distracted by the success (or lack thereof) of others.
When you compare your current self to the version of you, circa August 2010, are you better? If not, how can you change and adapt to become better in the area of your choice? Running? Add sprints and hill workouts, in addition to multidimensional strength workouts. Golfing? Add strength training with bands and mobility work to increase your torso range of motion. Life? Are you happy with the relationships you have? Are you looking for more? Pick up the phone, call that family member, or go out with friends to meet new people.
In summary, running is providing me with a new outlook on competition: I am my own worst enemy, and my own best friend. When I warm up properly, make a great workout template and running schedule, and stretch after each workout, I run fast. Period. I find this to be empowering, because when it comes to business, the parallels run deep: when I write often, read a few different books, schedule conferences or meetings, and train frequently, my training quality is innovative and efficient.
Racing Schedule: (all races in Central Park unless otherwise noted)
FITNESS® Mind, Body + Spirit Games, Saturday, September 17, 9:00 a.m.
Fifth Avenue Mile, Saturday, September 24 9:30a
Turkey Trot 4.4 Mile Race, Thursday, November 25th 10a, Rochester, NY
Join The Voices! 5 Mile Race, Sunday, December 4, 8:30 a.m.
NYRR Ted Corbitt 15K (9.3 Miles) Saturday, December 17, 8:00 a.m.
Coming tomorrow, I will preview my 16 week training schedule to prepare my body for the physical demands of running a semi-competitive racing schedule.
In order to get results you've never got, you must do what you've never done.