This weekend I completed the Boston Marathon! Yes, for real!
I have run five marathons before. This one, a virtual marathon, was very different. No mile markers, no cheering crowd, no finish line. But that’s okay.
I have never run the Boston Marathon, and never will – I would never meet the qualifying requirements, and I am happy with that. But this year, the 125th year for the Boston Marathon, the organizers generously opened it up to the first 70,000 who registered, no qualifying time requirements. I saw it as my only chance to be a Boston Marathoner! And when my friend Charmaine suggested we walk it instead of run, it seemed do-able.
Well, that was several months ago, and it ‘seemed like a good idea at the time’ was my main thought as the day approached. Knowing that we had planned to walk instead of run, my friend and I dispensed with a rigorous training regimen. Our mantra became “It’s just a long walk,” which is something we have experience with, having walked the Camino de Santiago three years ago. Yet, I never walked 42.2 km (26.2 miles) in one day. But I was pretty sure I could.
So, how does this relate to the Master Key Experience? Well, it is a perfect example of Mark’s MKE success formula:
Let’s see how that plays out in my Boston Marathon story.
Definite Major Purpose, backed by a Burning Desire. Completing the Boston Marathon is specific, measurable, realistic, rewarding, and time bound – a SMART goal! No actual time limit, but had to be completed in one go, on the weekend of October 9-11, 2021. Knowing that this is my one chance to become a Boston Marathon finisher, I had a burning desire to achieve this auspicious goal. The Boston Marathon is highly regarded in the athletic community. Big bragging rights!
Positive Mental Attitude. We never considered ‘not’ finishing. We kept each other motivated, we knew without a doubt that it would happen. And if one of us started whining about our sore feet or legs, the other would listen, but soon change the subject.
Written Plan of Action, expressed by Continuous Action. We planned in advance, it was a great strategy. We chose a central location in the river valley, near a washroom, where we could start and finish our event. From there we planned to do a few loops, however many it took to complete 42.2 km. It must have been a good plan, there were at least 2 other Boston Marathon groups who chose that same spot. I am grateful for the lovely (and relatively flat) walking trails in our river valley, and so grateful that we had perfect weather for our event. Continuous Action is pretty obvious, though we did take a couple of breaks for nutrition and rest.
Master Mind Alliance. Charmaine and I were in perfect harmony to reach our goal. We planned together, and during our walk we adjusted our plans as needed, together. And somewhere near the end we realized we had talked almost nonstop for over 8 hours! And still didn’t run out of conversation. It was great!
So, having a clear purpose, keeping our attitudes positive, following our plan with continuous action, and working together in harmony – brought us to our goal, completing the 2021 Boston Marathon.
Here’s some marathon wisdom for you. Think about how you can apply them to regular life.
Everything you wanted to know about yourself you can learn in 26.2 miles. Lori Culnane
Don’t confuse it getting hard with it being not your day. You should expect it to be hard. It’s a hard event. You can still have a really great experience. Des Linden
The body does not want you to do this. As you run, it tells you to stop but the mind must be strong. You always go too far for your body. You must handle the pain with strategy…It is not age; it is not diet. It is the will to succeed. Jacqueline Gareau
If I can do this, I can do anything. And so can you! I challenge YOU to follow this formula to reach your goals. Go for greatness!