I’m a runner.

I often get the question every runner gets: “Why do you run?” My response to that question varies depending on what state of mind I am in and how I feel.

You see, there are many reasons why runners run. We run because it feels good during the run; we run because it feels good after the run; we run for better mental focus; we run for better health. We run to challenge ourselves, to stretch ourselves, to strengthen our muscles, and to lose weight or stay in good shape. We run because it makes us feel like we are invincible, and we like to feel that way.  We run because we are competitive. Running is meditation. It is prayer. We run because we can; we run because we love to live.

As an experienced runner, I’ve run different races from 1 mile to 5 and 10k’s (3.1 mile and 6.2-mile races), and longer distances as well as half marathons (13.1 miles) in addition to running in high school on the cross country and track teams. 

There is not one single race that is the same as another. Every race is different: the distance, the terrain, the temperature, and the spirit of the race always varies. One thing, however, that is constant is the beginning and the end of any race. I know where to start the race I am participating in and I also know where it ends. What I don’t know is what is in between the start and finish lines. Sure, I could study the racecourse before I start running, but I really won’t know what I will experience before I actually run, step by step, to reach that finish line. Nor do I know what is around the bend in terrain I haven’t previously stepped foot in, but because my goal is to finish, I keep running.

two women after running a 5K race in Denver

Running helped me realize when I have a vision of something I would like to accomplish, the same dynamics apply: I have to take it one step at a time and sooner or later, I reach the finish line.

You do, too!

Running is like life. We are here to start and finish our races. Just like I imagine what it will feel like and look like crossing that finish line, we imagine what it will feel like and look like to accomplish our goals. It starts with a vision in our minds. We envision our goal and then take the steps to make that vision a reality. Like a runner who does not intimately know a racecourse but continues to move toward his goal (the finish line) by putting one foot in front of the other, we also reach our goals by taking small steps.

On top of all that, as a runner in a race, I have to be in the present, and simultaneously, I have to keep my mind on the end goal, the finish line, or my vision. When I stay in the present, I receive the gifts life gives me along the way and I enjoy the journey. If my mind strays from the present and from my goal, then I am tempted to quit the race.

Of course, there were many races that I participated in where I wanted to quit, but I kept my mind on the finish line. I knew that it did not matter if I couldn’t see the whole picture (the whole racecourse); what mattered was that I kept my vision with courage every step of the way.

Although I’ve crossed the finish line of every race I have ever participated in, there are some that I barely finished or finished injured. Those were the races where I was not prepared mentally or I doubted my vision when the rain, fog, snow, wind, or excess heat came forth. I learned if I had not had my mind on the finish line, I would have quit running when rain or snow hit.

When you set goals, problems might arise, but if you keep your mind on your vision, you will persevere through those problems.

Goals give us direction. Direction gives us purpose. Purpose gives us a feeling of well-being. Well-being is true life. Whatever your goal might be, do not be anxious. Instead, be in the present aware of each moment, and also expect the finish line.

Aim to Live…

Know the end goal is coming, envision and feel it, and act as if you know, without a doubt, that you will receive it. Be grateful for whatever circumstance you are in while expecting your goal because this is your personal racecourse. Live in the present and do not worry about the future or the past. You might have some problems along the way toward your goal, but know these are only temporary roadblocks.

two women posing in front of a finish line sign after running a 5K

Enjoy the journey. Be content. Be at peace. Know that whatever happens along the way happens to teach you something about yourself. Practice these things, and you will truly live.

The aim of life is to live, and to live means to be aware, joyously, drunkenly, serenely, divinely aware.”Henry Miller

Posted by:Vilma Reynoso

Vilma Reynoso, aka Vilms, is a freelance writer, copywriter, lifestyle blogger, gardening aficionado, and whole-food enthusiast who writes about the human experience, self-growth, living creatively, great books, veganism, and the plant-based diet. She is the author of Vegan Green Smoothies by Vilms. Her passion is to inspire others to live their best lives for a kinder, more compassionate world. To learn more about Vilma, visit her websites: www.vilmareynoso.com and www.veganspiritworldwide.com.

4 replies on “Aim to Live: How Running Taught Me To Focus on the End Goal

  1. Cool blog! Is your theme custom made or did you download it from somewhere?

    A theme like yurs with a few simple adjustements would really make my blog shine.Please let me know wwhere you
    got your design. Appreciate it

    Like

Leave a Reply to Peter B. Roth Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s