When I was sixteen dad built a fancy bulletin board that, to this day, I pin items to, the OG Pinterest for me. Over the years this board has been a reflection of what I’m striving to accomplish or be at that moment in life.
Right now the board has a magazine tear-out that reads “ESCAPE PLAN” amongst a jewel-encrusted broach and a column that discusses luck.
This past week, over the course of seven consecutive days, I ran fifty miles. These miles were run in torrential down pours, eighty-five degree weather and the wildest circumstance of all, in lieu of a steak!
In order to complete these miles I didn’t have a running buddy knocking on my door and I didn’t necessarily have a wide-open calendar. I had to carve out nine hours during my week to run by myself. I had to remain dedicated to what I believe is the best thing for myself right now, to something that I know I have control over. It wasn’t easy but there was no way in hell I was going to allow myself to bail mid-way when it became a little tough.
Truth is, I had this challenge mapped out and it was actually supposed to end with the completion of forty-nine miles. A friend told me I couldn’t leave that last mile out there. I remapped one of the routes to include mile fifty.
On Saturday morning after completing the challenge I looked at the words “ESCAPE PLAN”. I’ve been dreaming up some grand escape plan over here when in reality, you have to endure to overcome and to be honest with yourself in order to truly grow. There is no escaping difficulty and there is no escaping truth.
I few years ago I sidestepped Jennifer Garner so I could get a better view of the cheese selection at a market in LA. There are only a select few individuals that could make me fan-girl real hard. Alongside Adele and Miley Cyrus stand Jesse Itzler and David Goggins. The personalities of these individuals vary drastically but at the core they know their truth and they are committed to bettering themselves in this lifetime.
The most recent addition to this list is David Goggins. I was introduced to his story through Jesse Itzler but now I can’t stop thinking about his message. David has an incredible story to share. Coincidentally I watched this interview after I completed the fifty-mile challenge. All the things he learned throughout the challenges he endured, were the same realizations I had during my fifty miles. The thing is, he may be a Navy SEAL, ultra-marathoner beast and myself a moderately in shape runner that eats smoothies for lunch, but when you make a challenge personal, the competition becomes yourself. Whatever the guy next to you is doing, doesn't matter. Personal challenges don’t allow you to rely on just your physical capabilities; you have to have the drive to endure the uncomfortable space that you’re about to enter. Only then will you become your best self.
I am no longer trying to escape, I want to endure and find that truth myself.
I’ve never been one for speed. I guess it’s time to get a little uncomfortable. Next challenge.