“If you want something you’ve never had, then you’ve got to do something you’ve never done.”
This quote could easily go on the back of a marathon sponsored t-shirt OR a pink and gold, polka dotted coffee tumbler. At first glance, it’s generic. A statement that can apply to pretty much anything in life – job, school, love, money, success, travel. Look closer – the quote is about setting goals and chasing them down.
I run past this quote on my downtown loop. It reminds me of qualifying for the Boston Marathon. This was once a lofty goal, I figured I’d tackle at some point, but was not at the top of my list. Training for a half marathon last spring, I tapped into a new level of running that I didn’t know existed in my legs, in my gut, in my heart. After running a personal record in the half, a good friend challenged me to qualify for Boston. All of a sudden, I wanted it. I wanted it bad. I looked at my new half marathon time and the time I needed to qualify for Boston. I can do this. Maybe it will take a couple of races to get there. But I can do this, I thought. To do it, I had to run a pace I’d never run before.
Chasing Helen, like this quote, is about setting goals, chasing them down and shattering them. What is your goal? WHAT DO YOU WANT?
Do you want to run a new PR or your first marathon, half marathon, 5K? Do you want to try a new class at your gym, start working out in the morning, cook more at home? Whatever your goal, you can do it. But to get there, you’re going to have to do something you’ve never done before.
I wanted to qualify for Boston. The qualifying time for a 28 year old female is 3:35. My personal record was 3:49. Wait, I have to shave 14 minutes off my time. Is that even possible? The goal was out there. I ran my little legs off from July to November. I marked out a training plan with my coach-cousin, Allen Baddour. I cross trained. I added healthy fats and protein to my diet, and ate every single thing in my path along the way. For the first time in my life, I trained entirely without music. Nothing was perfect. I had some tough runs where I wasn’t properly fueled. Some mornings I hit snooze. But the goal was out there and I had to chase it down. If you want something you’ve never had, then you’ve got to do something you’ve never done. I ran the marathon in 3:26, qualified for Boston and shattered my personal record.
Before you give me a pat on the back or stop reading because you’re annoyed, you should know that two weeks later, I danced one too many songs at a family wedding, and ended up with peroneal tendinitis in my left foot. No running for eight weeks. I can’t blame it all on the dance floor. Being out for 8 weeks was miserable. A huge blow after the highest of highs. There will always be ups and downs in this goal-oriented life, but you have to keep moving forward.
Chasing Helen is about chasing yourself.
My goal is to motivate and energize you, and to introduce you to people who motivate me. I am chasing myself every day. So let’s set challenging goals and SHATTER them.
Who are you chasing?
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Photo by: Kyle Aiton Photography