Everyone has the end of year jitters. With talk of holidays and colleagues applying for annual leave, there is still so much work to get done before the end of the year. Invoices need to be submitted, charters need to be briefed, proposals need a decision on, workshops still need to be held. It’s an absolutely crazy time at the office at the moment.
It’s not only me that feels the tension. When I look around, I see some very stressed out faces. Tired, drained, with no more energy left. It even feels as if we’re all ready to give up and throw in the towel. It’s during these times that I remember my Johnson Crane race and realize that there is no option of quitting.
The Johnson Crane half marathon was the very first 21.1km race I ever attempted. I was fine during the first 14 kms. I ran in a good, steady pace. I felt fresh. However, I might have been a bit eager and by the time I got to the 16km mark, I hit the wall.
Hitting the wall is something most runners fear. It’s a terrible feeling. I remember it well. I was exhausted. It felt as if every step I took required immense effort until eventually, I stopped. My body would not carry on. I froze. I could not think of anything else but quitting. My legs refused to move and as hard as I fought it, every muscle in my body had given up on me. My mind was screaming, GO! But my body wouldn’t move.
It took a dear friend who happened to cycle past me to feed me a banana and gels to get some energy pumping through my body before I managed to get my legs to move and carry on running.
I have strung my medal around a little ornament on my desk. I use it to inspire me on difficult days.
Especially on days when it feels like I’ve hit the wall. The days when the stress overwhelms me. I stare at it and remember that I am capable of so much more…
It reminds me that even if I hit bumps in the road and even if I am on the verge of quitting that there is always an end in sight…
And a medal!