Do you remember the last time you stepped back to look over your accomplishments? You can easily forget your plan to do in future but think of your accomplishments is a great way to stay grounded and to reminisce about the good times that you have already had.
I was recently cleaning out my basement and looking for things to trash and get out of the house when I found a box full of old trophies. Some of the trophies were from my soccer or basketball leagues when I was a kid, but those didn’t mean anything special to me. Some of the trophies were broken from having been moved around in boxes over the past couple decades, and those got tossed as well.
Some of the trophies, though, brought back some great memories. One was for what I think was my first age group win, a 10k “mini-marathon” in Hartford, CT that raised money for the Sickle Cell Foundation. I remember making a turn in the park and seeing the finish line with only a couple of people in front of me, and all of them were old. (Of course, they were probably younger than I am now, but they seemed old to me at the time!)
Another and even more immediate way to look back on your accomplishments is to go over race reports or your training log for year’s past on a somewhat regular basis. I remember one time that I was reading an old race report of the New England Mile, and while I remembered that Bill Rodgers had been on hand to help out with the event I had completely forgotten that he had signed all of the award certificates. I found my certificate and sure enough, there was Boston Billy’s signature right there.We run these races for a reason. They aren’t just snapshots in time that we pass over and then have them done. Our racing experiences help define us as runners, and at least for me is one of the most fun parts of the sport. Races are a combination of competition, self development, and socialization that provide a not insignificant amount of joy in our lives.
Great advice and well-written essay!–Miss MCulla
So if you have to move one of your finisher’s certificates or awards or trophies, take a look at it. If you’re near a computer or see your training log on the table, flip through and read about some old races. Remind yourself how the race went, and even share a story about the race with a family member or a friend. The memories are one of the best parts about being a runner.
Blaine Moore is a running coach in Southern Maine with 20 years of training and racing experience.
Miss McCulla is a retired English teacher of 32 years. She has Mastery of the grammar and mechanics of English, and has taught expository, fiction writing, and rhetorical skills to hundreds of students and aspiring writers throughout her career. She has written/edited/self-published five books, and currently manages and edits a writing blog called The Underground Tutor where she gathers essays, articles, entries, papers, manuals, profiles, criticisms, analyses of literature and general interest examples, along with years of “teacher tips” and common grammar corrections.
Some papers will be marked so you can see the rationale of a teacher. FUN!
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