The support of strangers

Often the hardest part of running is not how tired your legs are, or how tight your calf muscles get.  It’s not gasping for breath as you try to run up a steep hill.  It’s the negative thoughts swirling around your brain as you continue to take step after step.

“I can’t do this, it’s too hard.”

“Everything hurts, I should just stop.”

“Why am I doing this?”

“This is stupid, I’m going home.”

Just as you may be about to give in to the negative thoughts, something wonderful happens.

As you are running towards people walking on the sidewalk, they look you in the eye and shout out encouragement.  They clap and cheer and tell you what a great job you are doing.  Sometimes you are so deep into your negative thoughts that you look around to see who they are talking to.  It can’t possibly be you.  But it is.  These strangers don’t see the struggle or the pain.  They see someone out running, giving it their all and they are proud for you; excited for you.

And suddenly the negative thoughts fade away and you focus on all the positives.  You stand a little taller.  You smile.  You look around and enjoy your surroundings.  You remember why you are out there running, giving it your all and you finish strong.

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