I was listening to a podcast, this morning, and the guy was telling a story that I found to be very inspirational. When it was over, I realized that it kind of sounded like my own story. Instead of boring you with his story, I decided to bore you with my story. There will be several take away nuggets in here for you. You just need to pay attention. Good luck!
I’m actually going to combine several stories into one. I’ll try to be brief, but I’m not sure how successful I’ll be.
The story starts in July 2001. My wife and I found out that we were expecting our second child. At the time, I was still working in my business. That means I was going out every day and working … ugh! I liked my job, but it was hard work and physically demanding.
I wasn’t in terrible shape, but I wasn’t in good shape either. Having a child on the way has a way of changing your perspective. At least it did for me. I was 42 years old, at the time. I wanted to get into good shape. Taking care of a newborn is very demanding, too. Taking care of a newborn, running a business and working in the business was all the more demanding!
I picked out “Body For Life” by Bill Phillips, as my program of choice. I wish Bill would write me a check for mentioning him here, but I doubt he will. I don’t mind mentioning it, because it is a good program. If you try it, do so at your own risk. I was having great results with the program. When I started out, I could only do 1 arm curls of 20-25 pounds. By week 8, I was doing 1 arm curls with 65 pounds in each hand.
I was in great shape, it only took 8 weeks and there were 4 more weeks left on the program, too.
That’s the good news. The bad news is that I was working one day, during the program and I leaned down, like I had a million times before, and I felt a twinge in my lower back. I really didn’t think that much of it, at the time. By the next morning, I could hardly move. I took Advil and applied heat to my back. I got well enough for me to go to work that day. To make a long story short, I lasted 2 days before I couldn’t work anymore.
I rearranged our entire work schedule to adjust to the fact that I wasn’t going to be able to work anymore or at least until my back healed.
It turns out that I was out of work for 3 months. We took a hit to our income, but the business was growing so fast that we barely noticed it. After being out of work for 3 months, I decided not go back to work. That was the day that I stopped working in business and began working on my business.
What a difference that made.
My youngest son was born in March 2002 and there has rarely been a day that I haven’t seen him off to school and greeted him when he gets home. I’ve enjoyed that immensely!
Your first take away nugget:
Don’t work in your business, work on your business!
At the time, I thought I was working for whatever I was bringing home, but I was really working for whatever I was willing to pay someone to do my job.
Now, we’ll fast forward 7 years.
My youngest son was growing up, fast. He was starting to get interested in playing sports. For those 7 years, since I hurt my back, I’d been afraid to workout … at all. I had tried several times, but I was usually left with back pain, after.
He was 7 years old and I couldn’t keep up with him. That sucked big time! I had to find a way to work out and get back into shape. Enter my friend, Dr. Ali. He is a walker. He walked 3 miles a day to try to get some exercise. I asked him if I could join him. Strangely enough, he never gave me an answer.
I decided to start walking, on my own. Ugh! I thought it would be so boring to walk by myself.
The first time out, I walked the 3 miles. It took me nearly 55 minutes and I was out of breath, sweating like a pig and my heart was pounding out of my chest. I fell in love with walking!
Over the next few months I worked myself up to 8 miles a day. That took me 2 hours to walk 8 miles. I kept walking for 2 years and then I began to seek a bigger challenge. I thought about walking a marathon. I was able to do 8 miles and that was easy. How hard could a marathon be?
The first place I looked was the New York City Marathon. I couldn’t complete the marathon within their time limits, so that idea went out the window. They had a 4 hour limit and I thought it would take me 6 hours to complete it.
I was talking to my mom, one evening and mentioned that I had been walking so long and that I was thinking about walking a marathon. She says, “I did a marathon, once.” I’m like … “What? I didn’t know that.” Where was I when she was doing a marathon?
She was 57 years old when she did her marathon. I was 49 at the time, so I had to do one, right?
She told me that they have marathons all over the place and I should try to find one. I found out that they have one here, in Baltimore. I signed up and did the marathon. It took me 5:52:32 to complete it. My goal was 6 hours or less. Cool!
Here is your second take away nugget:
You’re never too old to accomplish something great!
I would change to that, “you are never too anything to accomplish something great!
Fast forward 5 years.
I’ve done 4 full marathons and 2 half marathons.
All of that is the good news. The bad news is that for the better part of the past 3 years I’ve been severely injured. I have a neuroma on the bottom of my right foot. That’s been very painful at times. I have plantar fasciitis on my left foot. That might hurt worse than the neuroma. To add injury to insult, I feel off of a curb and nearly broke my left ankle.
I am finally on the mend or at least I hope I am. I’ve had several “false starts” in the healing department. I tried to walk only to find out how much pain I’d be in later.
Here is the third and final take away nugget:
No matter what you are doing, there will be obstacles, detours and pains along the way. If you give into these, you will never get to where you want to be.
If you persevere, you can accomplish great things.
Life is a marathon … what else do you have to do? You might as well reach your goals!
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