Here’s Proof that Creating a Vision Gets Results

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At the beginning of September I said to my husband that I was enjoying running so much that I would like to run a road race. So we decided to train for a half marathon that was two months away. Training to run 13 miles would mean I would have to literally “run through” some mental barriers. I have never in my entire life run more than 5 miles at a time so I had to open to the idea of running 8 more miles more than that. 
I definitely questioned my ability to hit this goal in such a short period of time.  Through middle school and high school I was a competitive gymnast so I was more used to strength training versus cardio training. Even as an adult I usually prefer strength over cardio. Then I thought to myself, “I gave birth three times, endured 36 hours of labor with my first child, compared to that running a half marathon should be a piece of cake.” (Well not exactly a piece of cake but I was trying to convince myself that I could do it).
For some reason though I felt really nervous about running that distance. I haven’t tested my body like this in a very long time. Could I do it? Whoa! Wait a minute, don’t I teach people how to create a vision for success? OK, now it is my turn to create my own vision for success. 
First I had to figure out what I wanted. I knew that that I didn’t want to fail at this challenge. I wanted to complete the race and actually feel pretty good when I crossed the finish line. I created a picture of myself crossing the finish line with my husband at my side. I would feel such a sense of exhilaration and accomplishment. I saw myself telling my family and friends that I ran a half marathon. Everyone would be congratulating me and I would feel so proud of myself. I started pinning pictures on my Pinterest board of how I would look and feel during my weekly training runs and on the day of the race. 
As we increased our run time I was amazed at how good I felt. A major milestone for me was running 6 miles. I broke through my first mental barrier of never running more than 5 miles. I actually felt pretty good after that run. Then each week our long run increased from 6 miles to 7 ½ to 10 and for our final long run we ran 11 miles. 
What I found is that when you run for a long period of time you have so many different thoughts going through your head. Whenever my legs started feeling tired or I had thoughts about quitting and just walking I would motivate myself with self-talk, kind of like a mental cheerleader. I would say things like “You can do this” or “You have strong legs” or “Just focus on your breathing.” I found those long runs to be very meditative.
 
It was a great time to practice having a positive mental outlook. There was no room in my mind for negative thoughts. Sometimes a negative thought would pop into my mind like “I’m just not going to make it this time” or “I just want to stop.” I practiced quickly replacing these negative thoughts with one of my positive thoughts from above. I began to think of my long runs as a metaphor for my life in general. Sometimes it felt so difficult but if I focused on the positive aspects I could break through my self-imposed barriers.
 The day of the race was the worst running weather you could imagine. It was cold, raining, a sleet/snow mix, and 50 mile an hour winds. I honestly did not think I was going to make it anywhere near the finish line. I thought to myself I made it this far at least I should run for a little while. Even with gloves on, my hands were ice cold but after the first few miles my hands got warm as did my body. 
Before I knew it we hit the 7 mile mark and I sucked down a couple of energy gels. My fatigued legs started coming back to life. Then I realized that I was past the half-way point, there was no way I was not finishing this race. The last mile was next to the beach and the wind was whipping like crazy. To stay focused I kept my mind on my vision of my husband and I crossing that finish line and then WE DID IT! 
So if you have a vision of something that you want but it seems a little out of reach just go for it. Remember to create your vision for success first and then look at your vision every day until you attain your goal. Do you have goal that you would like to share with my readers? We would love to cheer you on. Let me know in the comments and please share this post!

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