The Chicago Marathon posted the following on social media recently:
If you can’t read the writing, it is essentially asking people what motivates them to run a marathon. So it naturally made me think about why I am running one. I have blogged many times on what motivates me to run, but the topic of what is fueling me to run a marathon has never been something I have written about. So thank you Chicago Marathon for inspiring this post.
I wouldn’t say there is any one specific reason why I will be running a marathon. For me it is all about where I have come from and where I am going. This blog is titled “Running For The Average Joe” because that is literally how I see myself. I remember what life was like before I started running. I remember being around runners regularly and never really understanding it. Running was never something I was interested in. I would always ask runners I knew: “what are you doing and where are you going?” Because of this lack of really understanding it, I have just always seen myself as an average guy who picked up running one day. I have read stories of people who ran cross country in high school or come from some sort of athletic background who would get away from running for a while and eventually return back. They would discuss how motivated they were to run and how they were succeeding in running. Of course you were, running was a big part of your past life and your muscle memory is coming back. I’m really not surprised. But for me, it was different. I literally just picked up running one day. Out of the blue I decided to complete a series of runs and haven’t looked back yet. I am truly the “average Joe” type when it comes to running. So I’d say one reason I want to run a marathon is to prove I can do something so amazing just by sticking to it.
Another reason to complete this is to prove doubters wrong. I have blogged about this subject before, and will keep this brief because this part of my life is over and there is no reason to look back. When I first started running I had a serious doubter. They made me feel like crap as I was trying to do something so difficult. Like I said, this no longer exists in my life but there will always be doubters, whether you know it or not. I was never the running type, but that does not have to define me. I will complete this marathon for all those who are told they can’t.
Lastly I just want to test myself. By nature I am a very competitive person. What I like most about running is that it allows me to compete with myself. It is just me versus the miles on the course. There can be 40,000 other people on the course, but at the end of the day it is just that simple; one foot in front of the other. I always set a lofty yearly goal to see what I am made of. And 2015 is no different. I ran my first 5K in June of 2013 and by October of 2015 I would like to cross a marathon finishing line.
I am probably not some inspiring story that will get millions of people to change the way they live. But the person I have become since running has entered my life has changed drastically. It has instilled in me a work ethic that helps in many other areas of my life and has just made me a better person overall. By running this marathon I will be accomplishing something only a small percentage of people have done. And there was never any magic formula to getting it done. I didn’t have an edge over the next person. I just stuck to a plan of continuing to run. For me the marathon is a metaphor for life. If you are in a situation that you want to change, you do not need to wish or pray. Just get out there and make things happen.