Several years ago, my thought about my athletic career changed from team sports to triathlon and endurance sports. One of the biggest differences, I was not challenged and lifted by my teammates but had to find my motivation inside myself. The toughest time to find that motivation is during the middle of the race. After hours of effort, something hurts and everything in your body wants to stop. It does not matter if you are a back of the pack athlete, top amateur or professional endurance athlete you will have this bad time in the race or during training.
What then motivates someone to the finish line that may be hours away when this time comes? Why push past this pain? The exact answer is different for everyone, but almost everyone who has pushed past this point of pain will tell you something about crossing that finish line is exhilarating.
One has been through the mental battles with pain in different forms during the race so why does it feel like the last mile feel like you just started or the last 100 yards feel like you can go faster. I believe it is because you are reaching a goal and you are achieving success. I feel that way right now as we enter April and the end of the fiscal year for the university and the end of the school year for our students.
Why do I hope this matter to you? The finish line has many people there cheering loudly and encouraging each and every person finishing the race. These people are there for many reasons, but each and every finisher is glad they have stayed. We need you so we can finish strong.
One last point, during the final hour of an ironman most of the people at the finish line are athletes that have finished earlier. There will be hundreds of finishers encouraging the last few folks. Many of you have finished and we need you back to help us continue to encourage those who are doing the same thing. There are many ways to be involved and we need you. Let me know if I can help.