Life is a Marathon Not a Sprint! This phrase has been dancing in my head for a while now. And the more I meditate on it the more insight I am getting from it.
According to Wikipedia, “The marathon is a long-distance race with an official distance of 42.195 kilometres (26 miles 385 yards), usually run as a road race. The event was instituted in commemoration of the fabled run of the Greek soldier Pheidippides, a messenger from the Battle of Marathon to Athens, who reported the victory. The marathon can be completed by running or with a run/walk strategy. There are also wheelchair divisions.”
Now let’s look at this last sentence “…The marathon can be completed by running or with a run/walk strategy. There are also wheelchair divisions.”
1. Life can be complete with a run-walk strategy. This to me re-enforces the fact that life is in ups and downs. Or you could say in seasons. There are the seasons of life where we are on the run, running to achieve our goals, running to let go of things that are not working, running to run our families and business. And at other seasons, we are walking. I reckon that this is the season where we are a bit tired, we are not stopping but we are taking it slow, re-strategizing, recalibrating, gathering some energy and momentum for the next round of run.
2. Life also has wheelchair divisions. This to me is when life has hit us hard and wounded us so much that we feel handicapped in some areas of our lives. Yet, we are not completely disqualified from the marathon called life, cos even on our wheelchairs we can still participate, we can still run, we can still compete. Compete with ourselves to birth our goals, to birth our dreams and to make our lives count.
Wikipedia also mentioned that most of the athletes who participate in a marathon are recreational athletes. My take from this is that to truly enjoy this marathon called life, there has to be an infusion of fun to everything that we do.
In the story about Greek soldier Pheidippides, it was recorded that he ran non stop from the battlefield of Marathon to Athens and by the time he got to the assembly in Athens to announce the defeat of the Persians. He collapsed and died.
Therefore, this goes to say in life, if we keep running non stop, not resting, not having fun, then there is every possibility that the race might come to an end abruptly. Which is why it is important to try to find a balance between work and life.
Another lesson for me here is that when we see life as a marathon then we are able to practice delayed gratification. Why? Because a marathon is not an endless run, and even though life in its totality is a marathon, marathons have seasons and timings, which means the races in our lives are seasonal and as long as we know that for the season that we are in we would get to our destination, then it becomes easy for us to focus on the race at hand till it’s finished before starting another one.
What I am saying is this
1. You are on a marathon, not a sprint, a marathon demands that you conserve your strength in a way that you are able to finish the race well.
2. To run a marathon successfully you need to train, otherwise, you might end up collapsing.
3. To train properly you need a coach, someone who has gone the distance and can tell or show you tips and tricks on how to start the race slowly but steadily and use your conserved energy towards the end of your race.
4. A marathon is a test of your endurance, how long can you run for and keep running till you get to the finish line?
5. A marathon allows for a run/walk strategy. You can’t compare your race to that of others because your stamina isn’t the same with theirs, but that does not mean you cannot finish your race.
6. Even when life has hit you hard and left you broken or handicapped in some way, you still have a racing chance and you can still make the race count even if it means having it on your wheelchair.
I do hope that you would take life slowly but surely, fixing your gaze on the finish line and on the next race and remembering that you are on your own lane and your finish line is yours for the take if you would just run with the strategy that works for you per season.
If this has been valuable to you, please drop a comment and do share. God bless you. You can connect with me via Instagram on www.instagram.com/ejiroosakede