Hi guys, thanks for joining me today on this week’s live video. Yesterday I completed my third Edinburgh Half Marathon. That’s 13.1 miles. Today, I’m actually quite stiff and sore going up and down the stairs. When I sit still for too long, it gets quite painful. I get up and hobbling around. Yesterday’s race was good but I want to talk today about what I’ve learnt from the three different races I’ve completed. I wanted to share that with you today.

Yesterday’s race, there were 10,963 people who finished it. Out of all those, nearly 11,000 people have all got one thing in common. That is the fact that they completed the race. They achieved their goal whether to be their first ever race or their 100th half marathon. They started and crossed the finish line eventually. Whether it be it in their fastest ever time or they walked it or they run it or how they got around, they all crossed the finish line. They achieved whatever goals or objectives they had.

Maybe they didn’t achieve their goals but they all finished and crossed the line. For me personally, I get nervous before races. Yesterday morning, I got up about 6:00 AM. Had a smoothie and some porridge and some coffee. I tried to force myself to eat some food. I struggle to do that before races. The pressure of thinking about the race. The pressure I put myself about doing well, it just leads to a little bit anxious and so I struggle to stomach food.

That was all good. I got to the start of the race. Eventually, I did finish it in a minute slower than last year. Either way, I got round there. I know like all races, yesterday specifically was pretty mentally tough and physically tough. It was raining. It was quite humid. I was struggling to keep myself cool and I had gone off pretty fast as well. I was probably ahead of my projected pace of one hour 20 minute finish. Which is what I put down my predicted time. I ended up finishing in two seconds shy of one hour 25. Which I’m really pleased with. It was half way around, I feel I was running really slowly and it was just a struggle to get around. For me, the biggest thing I learnt from yesterday was just that mental toughness of persisting and getting through. There’s so many different things I could talk about that I benefited from different races and from my first race, second and even yesterday’s race. Things like about preparation, training and expectation to goal setting, the environment. The fact that the expectation of putting in one hour 20 minute finish time meant that I started with faster people around me, last year as well. I put a similar time down.

It actually happened to start off faster because I was running one of the faster people until I actually raised my expectations and made me raise my game as well. I was running around with faster people. I think yesterday I pretty run off too fast. Hey, that’s neither here nor there. Whether this is your first race or your 100th race, I think there’s one thing which everyone benefits from when they complete the race and regardless of how well they didn’t do. I think the big thing, is, this my thoughts in my experience is the biggest thing you gain is confidence.

Confidence that you were able to get through whatever struggles. Even if the race didn’t go to plan and you ended up walking part of it. You were miles off your PB, the fact that you finished, shows that you were willing to persist and that has to give you confidence. The only way confidence is gained is by actually doing it. That’s why this sign is talking about, just doing it. People don’t think they’re capable of doing these races. I’ve spoken to some people recently. This is their first half marathon. They maybe not had not done as much preparation as they might like but the fact that they decided to set out and start the race and manage to eventually finish it will have given them massive confidence.

They know next time if they maybe do more preparation, practice and train. That maybe next year, they’ll get a faster time. Either way, they have to gain massive confidence which whether they’re going to use that for running or just in general day to day life. Competing a challenge like a marathon or a half marathon, has to give you massive confidence in general. Whether it would be fitness related or just confidence about, “Yes, I feel confident.” I am more confident in myself about general day to day life because you managed to complete this challenge. I think that’s key. That’s really all I want to discuss and share with you today. Regardless what your goals are, challenges, whether you decided to run a half marathon or a marathon or something even longer or something maybe not as long as a half marathon but to you, it’s a challenge. Regardless of what it might be, by doing it, one of the key results will be confidence. That might be scary and take courage to actually do the thing. Once you go, follow through that result encouraged will ultimately lead to confidence. The confidence is the result. You can’t get confidence until you’ve done the thing.

You just need to do and the result will be confidence but you can then build on in future. That’s really all I want to share today. Regardless of what challenges that you might be dealing with daily whether it be a chosen challenge, like a half marathon or maybe just general life challenges, by facing up to them and pushing through that fear to encourage then the confidence will then come and that’s definitely the thing I’ve experienced personally. That’s all I want to leave you with this week. I plan maybe do a run tomorrow. We shall see how I’m feeling. I’m still pretty stiff, as I’ve already said. Anyway, you have a good week. I will talk to you again next week.

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