We run for lots of reasons. For causes/charity. For peace. From bad memories. To give others hope. Perhaps for love. Or maybe to prove something. We run to overcome. We run to deal with grief. We run to celebrate milestones. We train in the snow, heat, rain. We deal with injuries. We set PR's. Or we have bad races that make us wonder why did I even start. We run to overcome.
Our training and racing might be hardcore . Or maybe we are a weekend warrior. We run through personal pain. We run to deal with sadness. We run to find food. We run to find change - be it a penny on the ground or to bring awareness to a cause we are passionate about. We run to overcome.
Take Meb Keflezighi, he didn't even know he was a runner til high school. In fact he didn't even know what a "marathon" was. He ran as a kid in Eritrea. He ran to hide so he wouldn't be killed. He ran to find food. He ran to overcome.
He saw his parents sacrifice for him & his (10!) siblings. Meb lived through a war-torn country. He remembers the day he became a United States of America citizen and how proud he was to be an American. He always ran with his faith. He ran through injury. And harsh criticism. He ran to overcome.
Meb ran in the Olympics. And oh yeah, got SILVER in the Athens Marathon (2:11:29). He ran to become the American world record holder in the 10k. He ran to WIN the 2009 ING NYC Marathon. He ran to overcome.
Meb is a talented & gifted runner. But he just didn't go out one day & start winning races. Major races for that matter. It took days, months, years to earn some of those races. He faced setbacks. Major injury. And happiness - he has a beautiful wife and three beautiful girls. He had disappointment along the way. Running isn't perfect. Life isn't perfect. But he ran to overcome. And so can you.
The story of how Meb ran to his victory's is truly amazing and inspiring. It makes me wish I could run a four minute mile. But even if I can't, his story has encouraged me to keep running to overcome.
How will you run to overcome?
Sarah Stanley is a professional endurance athlete and when not running can be found taking a ice bath or enjoying a square of dark chocolate. Stay in touch here.
Disclosure: Sarah Stanley was asked to review the book & received a copy to do so.