On October 7, 2018, I ran my FIRST marathon, the Bank of America Chicago Marathon! It was an amazing journey that taught me SO many lessons about reaching your goals and living life.
The smile and the medal represent SO MUCH MORE than the race itself. They represent a journey that includes months of hard work, dedication, learning, and sacrifice.
Here are 26.2 lessons my first marathon taught me:
1. Your weaknesses often turn into strengths.
2. What once seemed impossible is now a goal achieved.
3. Only you have the power to take action over your choices and your life.
4. You are stronger (mentally and physically) than you give yourself credit for.
5. If you give up every time doubt crosses your mind, you’ll never achieve anything.
6. The best things in life are never easy to achieve, but are always worth it.
7. Don’t sweat over things you can’t control (like the weather), focus your energy on what you CAN control
8. You get out what you put into it. Put in the work and see the results.
9. Whatever pain you are in WILL subside.
10. Listen to your body. If something is wrong, get it checked out & take care of it.
11. Focus on the path ahead of you, not your obstacles.
12. Don’t compare yourself to another’s journey. You do you.
13. There’s enough room for everyone to cross the finish line.
14. Your mind is powerful and your body listens to it.
15. Setbacks (and injuries) happen. Learn from them and move on.
16. If you’re constantly competing with others, you’ll never find happiness within yourself.
17. Every day (or every mile) is the chance for a fresh start
18. Shortcuts never work. There are no shortcuts in marathon training.
19. Achieving goals takes patience and consistency. Results never happen overnight.
20. Ignore the haters. They’re always going to be there, don’t let them stop you.
21. Have fun—life is too short to take seriously.
22. Don’t be afraid to try a new strategy. You never know what will work for you until you try.
23. Be thankful that you have a body that is healthy and strong enough to carry you through 26.2 miles (and life in general)
24. Mental and physical exhaustion leads to emotions you don’t expect. Honor them but don’t let them stop you.
25. Nothing will ever be perfect. Focus on trying to make progress instead.
26. There will be bumps (or puddles) in the road... you can either go around them or through them but you can’t turn around and run from them.
26.2 Don't focus on how far you have to go. Focus on taking one step at a time!