Endurance runners have one thing in common: we’re all incredibly driven to achieve our goals. Succeeding over long distances requires a degree of mental focus – the kind that gets you through pain, obstacles and adversity.
But how do we maintain a sense of perspective on life, yet also pursue these massive goals? Is it possible to find a balance, and avoid becoming ‘obsessively obsessive’, to the detriment of those around us?
I’m not a professional runner. I’m a husband, father, and busy professional – to name a few of my roles. I’m guessing that goes for most of us. It’s about finding a way to keep that balance, without becoming a ‘fitness bore’ or letting anything slip.
Here’s what I do – give it a go:
- Find 30 minutes you can completely dedicate to the task, and switch off your phone
- Write down all the key ‘stakeholders’ (to borrow a business term) in your life: anyone who relies on you, is close to you, influences you at work, or who depends on your role to do their own jobs
- Now add more people to that list – anyone who you care about in a broader sense. Where I live, I regularly buy a Big Issue from the same seller, and find it humbling how a small thing can be met with such gratitude
- Imagine you’re having an out of body experience, looking down on yourself from a distance
- Replay some recent events from your life and give yourself a score between 1 and 8 (with 8 being the ‘best you’)
- Keep a score and reflect on whether you’re so focused on pursuing your own goals that you might have missed an opportunity to be a better you.
Remember, this isn’t about beating yourself up. I use the time to simply check-in with myself and ask: am I becoming ‘obsessively obsessive’ or is there a good balance?
I’d love to know how you get on – leave me a comment below or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
This is part of my ‘Super Fit @ 50’ challenge! I’m trying to become a faster, leaner and meaner endurance runner in my 50s – as well as gaining more energy for the important things in life. If you’re embarking on your own Super Fit journey, I’d highly recommend building in the above 30-minute obsession check-in.