It’s an awful word. And an even worse feeling. Sadly, most of us, at one point or another have to face disappointment. It could be anything, really, from a missed opportunity to a lost relationship and about a billion other things in between. The key, I have learned, and this is far easier in words than in practice, is to mourn the loss, learn from the experience and most importantly, keep moving FORWARD. You should not and cannot let today’s disappointments keep you from tomorrow’s goals.
For me, my disappointment came in the form of a race. A 42.195km race, to be specific, a marathon. At the encouragement of my husband, I signed up for the Standard Chartered Mumbai Marathon. He reasoned, let’s just sign up, you can decide later if you want to compete or not. But c’mon, of course if I signed up, I would want to run it. And, let’s face it; I’m competitive as all get out! I was running this race, and not just running, but beating my last time! And it’s Mumbai! BOMBAY! The maximum city. It’s a city that you hate to love and love to hate. It has more life, and color, and sound in one square meter than most cities do in all city limits! Running 42+km through a city like Mumbai is not just an experience, it would be legendary! The people, the landmarks, the cows (ha, just kidding), would be unforgettable! Unlike any marathon I’ve run before.
Anyway, my last marathon (The Kuala Lumpur marathon), I injured my knee. It took a good 6 weeks before I was able to run pain-free. That injury coupled with a series of sinus infections and gastric infections severely crippled what little training I could do. It was an awful decision to withdraw my bib from the race, but it was the right one. Sometimes the right decisions are the most difficult to make. For once, I listened to my head, not my heart. My body said no, I listened. To spend all that cash to travel to Mumbai to run a 42km race I was not prepared for is lunacy. Yet, I still wanted to run. I was so upset with the decision, I actually considered changing my mind and running.
I seriously moped around for a good day, mourning the loss of the epic experience that is the Mumbai marathon. Some would say I overreacted, I mean, it’s a race, for goodness sake, nothing more. But for me, it was more than a race, it’s my passion. You see, most people think marathons are crazy. Why would anyone want to run so far? But it’s not about the distance, it’s not about the pain – it’s about heart. It’s pushing your body, overcoming obstacles, physical and mental strength that prove anything is possible, and camaraderie amongst the runners and volunteers. It’s addicting. But, sitting around, feeling sorry for myself was NOT making me feel any better. In fact, quite the contrary.
It was time to accept the loss, and move forward. Sure I couldn’t run the Mumbai marathon, but there are hundred of races in the next months that I can run. Let’s focus on those. Focus on my family and the fun time we can spend together. Focus on my training for 2015 and the goals I have in place. Just because one race has changed doesn’t mean my resolutions will fail. That’s just crazy. It’s time to handle this setback with grace, not despair! Life goes on, and so will my training.
But look out Mumbai, next year, I WILL run your city (well, 42.195km of it).