Emotionally recovered from my failure in my last race, and able to start racking up the miles again, I am dealing with the fact that sometimes goals have to be flexible. I’m still able to compete in a race every month this year, and I might even be able to complete a 50k in August (a 50 Year old thing), but my 1000 miles for the year will be a bit more challenging… And that’s ok.
Often we set a goal for a reason and then the goal becomes its own reason. We forget about the motivation behind the goal and give the goal a life of its own. I determined to run 1000 miles because I knew if I did so, I would continue to improve my health and physical condition and I would be able to improve my marathon time. Pushing myself through an injury, though often considered valiant and, perhaps, heroic, would not actually serve the real purpose behind my running.
I think I often do this in other area of my life, as well. I lose sight of the real objective and let some intermediary goal take over. I work hard to impress my boss because that indicates I am better at my job. In reality, being better at my job will impress my boss. I try to do things that indicate that I am a better friend, or father, when being more concerned about the relationships will make me a better friend or father. I worry about being a better servant of God when serving others is what He wants of me.
I don’t want to get “preachy” on you, but I think that it is all connected.
Truth be told, my running is a metaphor for my roles as teacher, father, friend, servant of God… If I focus on the big picture, the intermediary goals will take care of themselves. If I fall a little short of 1000 miles this year, I’ll still reach the big goals of health and fitness.