I am constantly reminded why I love what I do. My athletes and customers continue to impress and inspire me daily. Talking with a group of FLEET FEET Racing Team members a few days ago, we started talking about where everyone started and how far they've all come. For many, it all started by trying to be a better, healthier person. In actuality, I believe its all about knocking down barriers. We set so many limits on ourselves that we shy away from pursuing our dreams; of being more.
Last year, when my wife (Lisa Cary) and her friend (Jackie Pirtle-Hall) started a development team for elite women, Runnababez, they asked their coach (aka, me) to write a blog. My first blog post, although sounding very much like a freshman English paper, explained what I mean by chasing dreams:
"Dare to be great. That’s been something I’ve preached for years now. Be great at something… at anything. Too often people accept, or worse, strive for mediocrity. They don’t want to stand out. Actually, they dream about being exceptional in something, but they don’t want to deal with the work or risk involved in pursuing that end. Its easier and safer to not be noticed, to blend in, to get by. We’ve all seen it in coworkers, in friends, in family, in ourselves. Its the ideal of doing just enough to get by. We don’t want the attention from being too good or too bad. There is a safe feeling being the middle of the bell curve. We don’t have the pressure to excel thrust upon us.
One of our biggest inhibitions to taking that leap of faith to pursue excellence is what if you not only chase a goal of greatness, but attack it with a fervor and fall short? How will your psyche’ take that blow? My belief is that you will come through the experience a much more well rounded and stronger individual. That fear of failure diminishes in the rarefied air of self discovery. You might not be the next Joan Samuelson, Yoyo Ma, or Sir Edmund Hilary, but you will have introduced a much stronger, better you to world… and that is just as precious and valuable.
Take that first step towards excellence. Pick a goal, make a plan, and attack it without fear. Be that person, that inspiration, that we all read about and are in awe of in others. Any hero you may have, is just a person like you and I. The big difference is they weren’t afraid to chase their dream, to face self doubt, to deal with failure, to test their limits. It is often a long and bumpy road, but well worth the ride. Now get out there and dare to be great."
I know that everyone who took part in our team chat pack the other day will tell you to get out there and just do it. Like many people reading this blog post, they didn't think in their wildest dreams they'd get to where they are today. It's all about that first step, though. For some, it's the first step into a "real running store." For others, it's stepping up to the start line of a race, or signing up for a training program. The weather may be dark and dreary, but that doesn't mean we have to be. Make a commitment to yourself. Pick a goal for you to go out there and attack. Find a team to help you attain it. Make friends with others who are on a common mission. This is your challenge this year. New Years resolutions don't have to be restricted to the dawn of a new year. Stop by FLEET FEET and let us help you reach your goals.
Good luck and happy racing.