by Nick Nordtvedt, PT, DPT, Cert MDT
“I bear many scars, but I also carry with me moments that would not have happened if I had not dared to go beyond my limits” —Paulo Coelho
It was a hot and humid afternoon. It was one of those runs when you feel like you’re running into a headwind no matter which direction you’re going. I had about two miles to go, when every ounce of my body was saying, “you have to stop.” I guess every ounce but one. That’s when I thought of this clip from the film, Facing the Giants, that Trent Presley had played at our quarterly Dynamix Family Reunion. When my legs were feeling completely gone, I pulled up that clip searching for any motivation I could find.
Made for Hollywood? Yes, but it sure helped me in the real world that day. I managed to finish the two miles to reach my goal for the day. I didn’t stop to walk again, and I turned off my phone screen so that I couldn’t see my pace or mileage anymore. I had been making a decent pace all along, but nothing spectacular. By the time I had finished, I had actually lowered my pace by 30 seconds on those last two miles compared to what I had run before watching the clip.
Sometimes it takes a shift in perspective to move us past our limits, past what we think we can do and what our body tells us we can do. Sometimes a change in motivation, or more of it, is what we need to keep going. You can’t stop when things get tough. You can’t even stop when you’ve done better than you’ve ever done before. You have to give everything you’ve got until there is nothing left. Find something that moves you to dig deep to somewhere you’ve never been before. You’ve never been there because it hurts, because it will take too much time or too much effort. Or, because you have to rely on others to get there when you can just get by on your own. Find what will push you to Go Beyond. You’ll be surprised what you find there, and what you’ll learn about yourself in the process.
What motivates you? Find it, hold on to it, and save it. When you are on the cusp of something great, but may feel like giving up, use it to help you go beyond.