In an article titled 11 Reasons Why Runners Are More Likely To Be Successful, Mr. Peteni states that running yields success, and his definition of success is living a fulfilling and balanced life. He outlines the reasons why runners are likely to be successful, based on his own experiences.
Since my running career was in ultra-endurance running across states and countries solo without any support crew and completely self reliant by pushing a stroller loaded with gear, food and water... I don't believe that all of Mr. Peteni's "reasons" apply to me as a runner. However, I believe that for the general populace of runners there are some things to be gleaned from his words. In a nutshell, these are his 11 reasons why runners are likely to successful in life.
1. They understand the importance of goal-setting
Nothing significant can be achieved in the absence of setting clear and powerful goals. Runners set goals all the time. Speed training is driven by goals. Hills training is driven by goals. Long runs are based on goals. Races are driven by goals.
2. They measure progress
Runners use gadgets because they measure almost everything: speed, heart rate, distance, averages, and more. All of this data is important and gets analyzed by runners to measure progress.
3. They value time
Time is of the essence to runners. To runners, one second can be the difference between a medal and non-acknowledgement. One second can be the difference between tears of joy and tears of heartache.
4. They are highly disciplined
Training for a long distance event – marathons and longer – requires self-discipline. It takes months of consistency, sacrifice and effort, all of which hinge on this one vital characteristic called self-discipline.
5. They know how to overcome obstacles
During training, runners will go through periods of injuries, illness and fatigue – physically and mentally. In extreme events, runners experience grueling obstacles. From the crazy distances to tough weather conditions, runners have to endure challenges that bring out the best in them.
6. They are patient
Runners value process. In a world of short-cuts and manipulation, runners understand that the best way to get success is through patience. Patience builds life endurance in you. Patience teaches you humility.
7. They know that competing with others is not the most important thing
You have to view competition with the right perspective. While competing with others can be great, competing against yourself is the ideal.
8. They build networks
Because of the nature of long distance running, you are able to spend hours on the road, interacting with others. Through this interaction, relationships are built. Through relationship building, intricate networks are built – all of which can be ingredients to success.
9. They budget
Runners have numerous events in a year, and some include travelling and accommodations. As a result, they are forced to budget in advance to avoid the increased costs of last minute bookings. Budgeting is essential to life success.
10. They understand the power of leverage
Runners understand the power of teamwork. When you run in a team, you are able to encourage one another and share the load and strain. You are also able to glean and learn from the strongest. For many runners, a team setting helps you to go far.
11. They view failure differently
Everyone experiences failure in life. The difference between those who succeed and those who fail is that those who succeed view failure as temporary. Runners learn from failure. They view failure as a necessary transition towards success.
Success is not an automatic process. It requires a certain type of mindset. It also requires a particular lifestyle that is built of productive habits. Running is a wonderful sporting discipline that builds characteristics in you that cannot be manipulated.
I retired from a lifetime of running a few years ago, reaching a point in my early 50's of having ultimately acquired what I wanted from the sport and valuing far more where I'm at and the healthy mindset I maintain daily. My faith, family and fabulous wife are now the only "successes" I need in life. Running the equivalent of over twice around planet earth did indeed embed into me habits that are essential for being successful. However, I no longer feel the need to pound my body into the ground in order to try and run from or to run toward anything in my life.
Keep Reaching For Life's Mileposts,