I had thought about calling this endurance. I’m feeling both right now, but I think persistence is more accurate. For 4 weeks, I’ve been doing the Couch to 5K program. It’s been hard and there are days I don’t succeed, but I keep at it. Yesterday, for example, I made it about halfway when I decided I had to walk the rest of the way. Generally, when I can’t make it, there are reasons. I went too fast at the beginning, maybe, or it’s too hot. Yesterday, I think it was a combination of going too fast and hills.
I could get frustrated or give up, tell myself it’s not worth it, but I don’t. I just go back out another day and try again. I started this whole program to get back in shape, but also because I wanted a challenge. I’m not someone who considers exercise fun. But I thought it would be good to set a goal and work towards it even when getting there might be really hard. I think the challenge itself is what’s important, not that it’s specifically exercise. I picked something that was out of my comfort zone, but that would make me feel accomplished when I finish and that had a specific end goal. I’ve had colleagues take on things like learning an instrument or painting. It’s a sign of their ability to grow and learn and to expand their perspective.
Pretty much any goal you set for yourself is going to be challenging. Even when it’s within your area of expertise, there will be challenging moments along the way. Being able to keep going is the only way to reach your goal. I feel that I’m not just training for a 5K, I’m training myself in persistence, something that will be useful in everything I do.