Photo Credit: Spencer Tuggle
Training for the original Ultimate Runner Competition (10k, 400 meters, 100 meters, a mile, and marathon all ran on the same day) years ago reinforced the idea to me that hard work is required for just about any worthwhile goal in life. However, society, in general, is losing sight of the importance of hard work in the attainment of important life goals.
No effort diets, no effort exercise, no effort marriages, and no effort CEO’s who get bonuses even when they lose money are just a few examples that come to mind. We should not expect free lunches when trying to reach an important life goal.
Everything worthwhile in life generally requires hard work and dedication. To think we can get by with little work in the attainment of an important life goal is false thinking.
There are no shortcuts to success. Self-sacrifice and self-discipline are more than mere words to the champion. They are a way of life if you want to succeed in endurance sports or any important goal in life.
The motivation marketplace is flooded with surefire, easy to use formulas for success. Don’t fall for these lies, even though masses of people do. Reaching an important life goal especially in endurance running requires hard work, dedication, and focus.
The concept of “Deserving to Win” at what you do in life each day is incredibly important. Self-sacrifice, self-discipline, and going the extra mile are what champions are made of in life.
Excellence requires consistent hard work to get the job done. Mediocrity expects something for nothing.
The truth is that greater knowledge does not necessarily equal greater performance in any area of life either. Being head smart is not the same as being street smart. You have to apply what you’ve learned to reap results. Well done is better than well said.
In endurance running for example, simply knowing about training, exercise physiology, or the latest study about a breakthrough in human performance is not enough. You have to actually go out and practice what you’ve learned. Talking just about a goal for too long is a waste of time. At some point, you must cut off distractions including analyis, paralysis, and go for your goal.
We have enough theorists in life. We need more people who live the phrase "well done is better than well said". No matter how much success we've had in life, we can never rest on our laurels if we expect to reach a meaningful and worthwhile goal. Every new goal takes hard work and dedication.
Let me illustrate these points. I coached an athlete once who forgot the “Deserve to Win principle”.
The runner I coached was a national class endurance runner at one time. This athlete worked extremely hard to run at the national class level. After many years of competition, this athlete retired from competitive distance running.
However, with another Olympic trial looming, the runner wanted to give it one more try. There was only one problem. In some ways, this person assumed they could reach their goal because they had been in the championship zone before. The athlete forgot how much work it took to reach big goals. This person missed their goal primarily because they forgot the type of commitment and extra hard work it took to reach an important milestone in life.
Zig Ziglar the famous motivational speaker was famous for practicing his speeches for hours even though he gave the exact speech many times. He knew that deserving to win was mandatory, not optional. There was no entitlement thinking in his life.
Remember the “Deserve to Win" principle. These three words will help you in all aspects of life, not just endurance running.
There is always a need and room for grace in life. We all need grace at times. However, consistent entitlement thinking is the enemy of excellence and progress in all areas of life.
Always strive to do your best by going the extra mile in all of life’s most important activities, including your personal running goals.
The simple saying, "Hard work beats talent when talent does not work hard" is true. Deserve to win.
Copyright 2020, Larry Weber