Last weekend a pretty incredible thing happened at the Austin Marathon – the first place woman collapsed within meters of the finish line and crawled her way to the end. She ended up taking third place, but her determination was inspiring.
When I saw this article written about what went down that day and watched the emotional video, memories flooded back of that day at CIM. To see it happen to a professional so soon after it happened to me actually makes me feel a little better about the whole thing. She clearly was pushing herself to her limits (she had also just made a turn before collapsing) and she pushed herself just past the edge. (Watch the emotional video here).
In the hours and days after CIM, I was flooded with support over what happened. Two people even reached out to me to tell me that a very similar thing happened to them in the last few miles of a marathon! Knowing I wasn’t alone helped with the pain. You and all my other friends and family knew how much that day meant to me. You knew how hard I worked and how much I wanted that BQ. Many of you watched as my confidence was built up before my first attempt in Eugene and then torn down bit by bit after failures there, at OC and the most heartbreaking, Phoenix. But, my confidence came back as I trained last year and I would have put money on my BQ dreams becoming reality last December in Sacramento.
But life doesn’t always go as planned. In more ways than one, I’ve learned that is quite true lately. Things that you think are absolute turn out to be false, relationships you thought were strong end, and the person you were rooting for fails or lets you down. Life isn’t about what happens to you, it’s how you handle it (thank’s Page’s dad!). For me, that has meant mourning the loss of a dream, acknowledging that my failure is not a reflection of my self-worth or identity as a runner, and moving on.
I actually have surprised myself by not signing up for another goal race right away. It’s time to put the BQ goal on hold. I’ve been relentlessly pursuing that goal for two years (which immediately followed the all-consuming 1 year long task of training and completing my first Ironman) and there are now other things that I want to pursue that don’t involve running or triathlon at all. So here I am, dusting myself off and getting back up, but not in the way that many might expect. I’m not giving up on running Boston one day. But right now, I can’t even tell you when I think I might try again.
Running and fitness are definitely going to be a big part of my life, but not in the same way for a while. This blog isn’t going away, but it might change a bit. I’d love for your to join me for the next journey.
Have you ever changed paths before accomplishing a goal? Have you ever put a goal on hold and later returned to accomplish it? What changed?