8 years ago I ran the first ever Milton Keynes Marathon…
Standing there in the freezing wind and rain waiting to be called to the starting line
I remember waking up that morning raring to go until I looked outside…
The rain was sideways and the wind was howling
I’d trained for months and was about to take on the biggest physical challenge of my life but I only had two words in my mind
I wanted to quit
“I’m not running a marathon in these conditions, I can just do it next year”
Then I remember my Dad knocking on the door asking how I was feeling…
Him, my mum and everyone who had sponsored me was expecting me today
Waiting for me to get there and run that distance
They’d be waiting around for near enough 5 hours in the same conditions I was running in but they didn’t care
I was the only one who cared about the conditions because I was letting something I couldn’t control dictate my actions
I was afraid it would ruin all my preparations
The closer I got to the starting time the less I started to care and the more I began to soak up the atmosphere
This was the first ever marathon in my town and I was running it!
Why was I letting the weather control my mood and my mind?
I needed to focus on the race and get the job done
I was aiming to run sub 4 hours so I set off at a good pace
The first 10 miles flew by, then 15
Then 16, 17, 18, 19
No problems whatsoever. I was just behind the pace I needed but still had a lot in the tank
Then mile 20 came and my hamstring went
I couldn’t even straighten my leg fully let alone run or jog. People kept pounding past me and I thought my race was done
Then I thought about everyone counting on me
They were all waiting in MK Stadium for me to finish and had been tracking my time online
I needed to finish this and just keep moving forward
I continued to walk the remaining 6 miles and was cheered on by complete strangers for what felt like a lifetime. A few even walked with me and gave me words of encouragement to just KEEP GOING…
I crossed the line in a time of 4hours and 54 minutes with the last 6 miles taking nearly 2 hours 40 minutes
This was one of the biggest learning experiences in my life
Just when I thought I was done I kept going
Just when I thought I was about to let everyone down I kept going and they inspired me
When my back was against the wall I had my audience walk with me and push me forwards
All I had to do was show up and keep going…
About The Author:
Gary is a business and sales coach with a previous background in corporate management.
He spent many years learning mentoring, training and guidance skills in a senior manager position, before transferring his skill set into coaching.
He now coaches sales professionals on how to escape the rat race, create a brand, and put all their knowledge and understanding into selling online with their own online business!