Running a Marathon
Let's face it, if you've ever run a marathon, or even been a
spectator, you'll appreciate the motivation and commitment
involved. If you're not prepared when it comes to race day you
can expect many hours of suffering and struggle!
It doesn't have to be that way, of course, if you put in the
required training over several months. This requires commitment
and motivation, and a belief that the accumulation of all those
training miles will help you to reach your goal-- whether this
is time-oriented, or the equally valid desire to get round.
So what is meant exactly by motivation and commitment?
Motivation is the desire to achieve something unusual that gives
you the incentive to do things that other people are not
prepared to do. Not many people are prepared to train week in,
week out so that they can stand at the start of a marathon and
say to themselves, "yes, I am ready and I couldn't have done
You can always do something more, but even the elite athletes
feel that way. Every athlete has their challenges -- whether
it's getting the children ready for school, or an Achilles
injury. It's how we overcome these challenges that make us
stronger, and mean we can stand on the start line with a quiet
If you're working full time you might have to get up every day
at five a.m. to fit your training in, and this will take
commitment, motivation and determination. It won't help if after
a few weeks you revert to your former habits, and get up half an
hour before you have to leave for work.
Whether it is getting up early, or beginning a fitness program
your motivation and commitment needs to last over the long term
to have an affect. In training for a marathon it will not help
running for ten miles every two weeks, and doing no exercise in
between. Your body will have forgotten what it has to do by the
time you run again! It is better to run three or more times a
week with one longer run on the weekend, and you will be in
These small, regular runs will add up to success over time, but
they are far easier to do when you have a target to aim at. This
can be a time you want to run, or the desire to complete the 26
mile race. Either way if you know what you want to achieve you
will be more likely to do the things you need to do. Having a
target concentrates the mind, and increases your motivation.
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