There are many things I love about ultra running, the time in the woods, the people, and as crazy as it sounds, I love the hours spent training and planning. Pushing myself to past my perceived limits has taught me a lot about myself and the world around me. It has inspired an entirely new level of self-confidence.
There are a few thing that I don’t like, for instance the time spent dropping water and extra food, sometimes this can take awhile. The main thing that I don’t like about it is the “but” and “only” I started hearing. You see, I have noticed that once people find out that I have ran ultra marathons, I tend to get these. As in “I know it’s only a warm up to you, but I signed up for my first 5k.”
So what if it’s only a 5k, you’ve set a goal and you are trying to achieve it. Seeing someone finish a 5k is as exciting to me as any other race. What makes it so great is seeing someone do something that they once viewed as impossible, a mental barrier has fallen.
Watching others do incredible things inspires me, and when I see the person who has lost weight cross their first finish line, I get inspired. When someone takes a few seconds off their personal best time, I get inspired. When someone sets a lofty goal and starts reaching for it, I get inspired.
Just be forewarned, if you tell me that you have done a distance and are thinking about going longer, I will push, pull, prod, and goad you until you sign up for that race. Thinking about it will not get anything done and I want to see you do it. .
Ultimately, the greatest thing we can do for the world around us is to inspire each other. If someone looks at me and decides to do a 10k because they saw me do 100k, then that is a gift to both of us.