Me as Metaphor

“What is the difference between an obstacle and an opportunity?  Our attitude toward it.  Every opportunity has a difficulty, and every difficulty has an opportunity.”  ―J. Sidlow Baxter

About 2 weeks ago I lotteried into my dream marathon, The Marine Corps Marathon. This race is in Washington D.C. I will get to run a relatively flat course through all the historical monuments on my birthday weekend. Seriously, this has been my dream marathon for 5 years. I have entered the lottery 5 times at various levels of fitness. This year out of habit I entered once again, secretly hoping I wouldn’t get in because the only shape I am  currently is round. Long story short . . . I got in . . . Now 6 months/ 28 weeks to prepare.

Let the training commence *Insert Motivational Running Playlist*

First training run:  success. Second training run:  disaster. I fell and rolled my ankle which pretty immediately swelled up to the size of a tennis ball and scratched up my right side. Off to urgent care I went . . .  severe sprain . . . ice, elevate, and no running . . . UGH.

This is beginning to feel like an obstacle, especially for me who has already built out a highly detailed training calendar and relies on my Type A personality and lists and calendars and such to reach goals. Adjusting is hardly ever something I do well with my personal goals. The only thing going through my head for a bit is ‘I have to train. I have to train. I have to train. I have to hit the goal I set.’

Then my biggest fan gently reminded me I was not going to win this race, that my pace didn’t matter . . . that finishing the race and enjoying this run that I have wanted to badly is what I need to focus on. What if I end up walking some of it? What am I trying to prove and to whom? I know the goals 26.2 miles on October 22nd, 2017. What if I am supposed to slow down and enjoy the process a bit?

Every difficulty has an opportunity. My opportunity was a change in perspective. I know what I need to do to get the job done. I will likley have to adjust along the way, and that is ok. It may not be fast or pretty, but it will be worth it.


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