Motivation

I believe what we hear others say about a shared passion goes deep into the human psyche, stirring our motivation.

From the opening pages of “26.2 Marathon Stories” by Katherine Switzer & Roger Robinson

“The Prelude to a Marathon is one of life’s strangest yet most vivid times. It is a time of intensity yet relaxation, apprehension yet resolve; a time of deeply introspective solitude in the midst of the biggest jostling throng most of us will ever join. So many people, intent on a separate inward commitment, but united in one common physical endeavor. Our motive is private, the context public. We are strangers who are instant comrades, competitors bonded by the shared knowledge that we are all about to undertake one of the hardest tasks in our lives. Ahead lie strenuous effort, weariness, and pain, but we will endure it all voluntarily, for the sheer enjoyment of trying. The communal atmosphere before the start is tense, like an army awaiting the order to enter battle, because the marathon is a contest – and each runner will be tested. Yet the mood is also ebullient and exhilarating, like a troupe of actors before a performance, because the marathon is also a drama – and each runner’s story will be part of the action…And the final moment before the race everywhere is the same, and it is magical. The music, the anthems, the speeches, the cheers, and the chatter all cease and at last the runner are silent. For runners, compulsively in motion, it is a unique moment of stillness. For 5 or 10 seconds everyone in that vast crowd looks silently inward and forward. All feel the premonitory glow, the flicker of readiness, like dry wood about to flare into flame. The gun is fired. And the marathon begins.”

“In long-distance running the only opponent you have to beat is yourself, the way you used to be.” – Haruki Murakami author of ” What I Talk About When I talk About Running”

“In running, it doesn’t matter whether you come in first, in the middle of the pack, or last. You can say, ‘I have finished.’ There is a lot of satisfaction in that.” -Fred Lebow, New York City Marathon co-founder

“Running is the greatest metaphor for life, because you get out of it what you put into it.” -Oprah Winfrey

“Racing teaches us to challenge ourselves. It teaches us to push beyond where we thought we could go. It helps us to find out what we are made of. This is what we do. This is what it’s all about.” -PattiSue Plumer, U.S. Olympian

“Believe that you can run farther or faster. Believe that you’re young enough, old enough, strong enough, and so on to accomplish everything you want to do. Don’t let worn-out beliefs stop you from moving beyond yourself.” -John Bingham, running speaker and writer

“Running is a big question mark that’s there each and every day. It asks you, ‘Are you going to be a wimp or are you going to be strong today?'” – Peter Maher, Canadian marathon runner

“Ask yourself: ‘Can I give more?’. The answer is usually: ‘Yes’.” -Paul Tergat, Kenyan professional marathoner

“We run, not because we think it is doing us good, but because we enjoy it and cannot help ourselves…The more restricted our society and work become, the more necessary it will be to find some outlet for this craving for freedom. No one can say, ‘You must not run faster than this, or jump higher than that.’ The human spirit is indomitable.” -Sir Roger Bannister, first runner to run a sub-4 minute mile

“The miracle isn’t that I finished. The miracle is that I had the courage to start.” -John Bingham

“Running should be a lifelong activity. Approach it patiently and intelligently, and it will reward you for a long, long time.” -Michael Sargent

“Remember the feeling you get from a good run is far better than the feeling you get from sitting around wishing you were running.” -Sarah Condor

“Don’t bother just to be better than your contemporaries or predecessors. Try to be better than yourself.” -William Faulkner

“Every day is a good day when you run.” -Kevin Nelson

“Running long and hard is an ideal antidepressant, since it’s hard to run and feel sorry for yourself at the same time. Also, there are those hours of clearheadedness that follow a long run.” -Monte Davis

“I had as many doubts as anyone else. Standing on the starting line, we’re all cowards.” -Alberto Salazar, three-time winner of the NYC marathon

“Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss it you will land among the stars.” -Les Brown

“When it’s pouring rain and you’re bowling along through the wet, there’s satisfaction in knowing you’re out there and the others aren’t.” -Peter Snell

“It’s supposed to be hard. If it wasn’t hard, everyone would do it. The hard…is what makes it great!” -Tom Hanks in A League of Their Own

“The difference between the mile and the marathon is the difference between burning your fingers with a match and being slowly roasted over hot coals.” – Hal Higdon

“A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity, an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty.” – Winston Churchill

“There is no such thing as bad weather, just soft people.” – Bill Bowerman

“But if you never try you’ll never know,” – Coldplay “Fix You”

“Spend at least some of your training time, and other parts of your day, concentrating on what you are doing in training and visualizing your success.” -Grete Waitz

“Success is a state of mind. If you want success, start thinking of yourself as a success.” – Dr. Joyce Brothers

“Citius, altius, fortius…swifter, higher, stronger.” Olympic Motto

“Anybody can be a runner. We were meant to move. We were meant to run. It’s the easiest sport.” – Bill Rodgers

“Mental will is a muscle that needs exercise, just like the muscles of the body.” -Lynn Jennings

“No one ever drowned in sweat.” -Author Unknown

“We may train or peak for a certain race, but running is a lifetime sport.” -Alberto Salazar

“There’s no such thing as bad weather, just soft people.” -Bill Bowerman

“If you want to become the best runner you can be, start now. Don’t spend the rest of your life wondering if you can do it.” -Priscilla Welch

“He who is not courageous enough to take risks will accomplish nothing in life.” – Muhammad Ali

“Those who think they have not time for bodily exercise will sooner or later have to find time for illness.” -Edward Stanley

“It is better, I think, to begin easily and get your running to be smooth and relaxed and then to go faster and faster.” – Henry Rono

“Many people shy away from hills. They make it easy on themselves, but that limits their improvement. The more you repeat something, the stronger you get.” – Joe Catalano

“Me thinks that the moment my legs began to move, my thoughts began to flow.” – Henry David Thoreau

“Play not only keeps us young but also maintains our perspective about the relative seriousness of things. Running is play, for even if we try hard to do well at it, it is a relief from everyday cares.” – Jim Fixx

“If you become restless, speed up. If you become winded, slow down. You climb the mountain in an equilibrium between restlessness and exhaustion.” – Robert Pirsig

“If you run, you are a runner. It doesn’t matter how fast or how far. It doesn’t matter if today is your first day or if you’ve been running for twenty years. There is no test to pass, no license to earn, no membership card to get. You just run.” -John Bingham

“To know you are one with what you are doing, to know that you are a complete athlete, begins with believing you are a runner.” – George Sheehan

“I often hear someone say I’m not a real runner. We are all runners, some just run faster than others. I never met a fake runner.” -Bart Yasso

“I run because it’s so symbolic of life. You have to drive yourself to overcome the obstacles. You might feel that you can’t. But then you find your inner strength, and realize you’re capable of so much more than you thought.” -Arthur Blank

“May the road rise up to meet you. May the wind be always at your back.” -Irish Proverb

“A course never quite looks the same way twice. The combinations of weather, season, light, feelings and thoughts that you find there are ever-changing.” -Joe Henderson

“Life is often compared to a marathon, but I think it is more like being a sprinter; long stretches of hard work punctuated by brief moments in which we are given the opportunity to perform at our best.” -Michael Johnson

“We all have dreams. But in order to make dreams come into reality, it takes an awful lot of determination, dedication, self-discipline, and effort.” -Jesse Owens

“Running is not, as it so often seems, only about what you did in your last race or about how many miles you ran last week. It is, in a much more important way, about community, about appreciating all the miles run by other runners, too.” -Richard O’Brien

“I’m going to work so that it’s a pure guts race at the end, and if it is, I am the only one who can win it.” -Steve Prefontaine

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