You are the obstacle

Close your eyes with me and imagine crossing the line at the October 30th TMC Downtown 5k.  What does that feel like?   Whether you ran or you walked or even did a little bit of both, imagine making that final turn and seeing the clock, hearing the crowd cheering and knowing that all your hard work paid off – it’s right there and you did it.

Now ask yourself, “What did it take to get to that point… from this point?”.


There are two kinds of people here.   There are people here that will finish the 5k, walking or running, and there are people here that will quit.   It happens every semester.

I’ve tried to remove all the obstacles.   This program has been FREE from day one – I’ve never charged anyone.   Of course, nothing is really free – it costs someone something. It’s costing you time, it’s costing me time, it’s costing both of us the opportunity to do something else, it’s costing us both the gas to get here.   For all that, there’s no fee.   Not to say that there isn’t value – I think past particpants would argue that there’s a TON of value in what we’re doig here – but you don’t have to pay me cash to participate in this semester.

And despite that, I’m grateful.   My life is full and rich and wonderful and despite whatever financial situation my wife and I are in – we’re doing as well as we can, and we’re happy.  We’re motivated.   We’re doing it, and we’re finding a way to pay for the things we value in our lives, even when they seem expensive.

This program is fun.   We stay together so people don’t feel left behind and we cheer each other on.   We have special events built into the program like photo scavenger hunts, fun runs, and alternate workouts.

This program is rich.  We are the only 5k program that I know of anywhere that has quality guest speakers who give us their time for free and sometimes give us a little bit extra.   Our guest speakers are life-changers.. you’ll see.

So for all that, there will still be those who find an excuse to quit.   Maybe they don’t like something I said.  Maybe they don’t like the workouts – the first one was too easy, the fourth one was too hard, the workouts exposed weaknesses they don’t want to admit to. Whatever the case, there will be those who, despite removing as many obstacles to fitness as this program does, will still find an excuse to quit.

They will quit because there is one obstacle they won’t move – themselves!

Their fear, their unwillingness to be a beginner, the fear of failure, of being awkward.

I used to take it personally as the coach when people would start to drop off around week four until I realized that I could be the best coach ever and someone would still find a reason for their quitting the program.   It might even be some flaw in me, because I have flaws!  I’m human!   I screw up on a daily basis – but that doesn’t have to be your basis for quitting.   Let me be flawed and keep going anyway!  You will either find a reason to keep going, or you can point your finger away from yourself and blame someone else – ultimately, it’s still going to be on you.

Ultimately, you are the only one that can make change happen in your life.  You are the final obstacle between everything you are and everything you want to be.




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