At the moment I am training for my first marathon. In 2011 I completed a half marathon during the Blackmores running festival in Sydney. I loved it.
The Gold Coast Marathon, in which I will be competing, is the first weekend in July 2013 and I started training late December 2012. My training run today was 26 kilometres.
When I returned from travelling in November, after rather sporadic exercising efforts while away, my running fitness was terrible. The first run of 4kms I did, I truly struggled and felt sore for days afterwards. I was worried I wouldn’t be able to regain the fitness I had when I ran the ½ marathon.
At that time, a marathon of 42kms felt (and sometimes still does!) overwhelming. But it really is a goal I want to achieve. And I had to start somewhere. That 4km run was the first step.
When I sat down to work out the amount of debt I was in and came to the figure of $14,774.12 I felt the same overwhelming sense. And at that time, I didn’t even have a job, so the mountain just seemed even higher. But I made my first Debt Smashing* repayment towards credit card #1 in February. That was my first step towards my Debt Free goal.
*Debt Smashing repayment is a payment above and beyond the minimum repayment 😉
Training for a marathon requires:
- Hard work
Paying off a mountain of debt requires the same stuff. Endurance – months and months of debt repayments. The commitment is making these payments. The hard work is sticking with the plan, regardless of how you feel at the time.
You can’t wake up one morning and just decide to run a marathon when you haven’t trained. And unless you are a lucky recipient of some super cash windfall, you can’t eliminate a mountain of debt overnight.
I am applying this commitment, endurance and hard work to both my goals of running a marathon and becoming debt free. And now, I am many ‘steps’ in (especially with the marathon) I am totally focused to do what it takes to achieve both.
After my first 4km run and after seeing the total amount of debt I was in on paper – I could have let those overwhelming feelings win. I could have said the marathon was just too hard (it is, afterall, a choice to compete!) and I could have continued to stick my head in the sand and ignore my debt.
But I didn’t. I took that first step. And yes, I am still far from both finish lines, but you know what – I’m closer than I was when I started out. I wasn’t defeated by the feelings I had at the time. Both goals were big. They were never going to get any smaller, so I just got on with it.
The first step was the hardest one. But I’m SO GLAD I took it.