Picture the scene: I left my house last Thursday at 5.45am. Took a client out for a run in the total darkness and pouring rain. We got absolutely soaked and covered a total of 7 miles. A good start to my morning.
Six additional sessions later, a couple of eaten meal deals, a few hours spent sitting in London traffic and too many coffees, I walked back through my door around 6pm. Equally as dark and as wet as when I left the house. As I approached the door, I could hear the usual sounds of all hell breaking loose in the Quinn household.
My eldest, Finley, who is 7, had been set long division maths. Finley had about as much motivation to do his homework, as I had to do my 15 x 30 second hills which Coach Partridge had set me to do later that evening. Yet after some tough negotiating, he got down to his work and I began putting my long division skills to the test! There were tears, lots of confusing looks, lots of crashing, banging and waving hands, even some shouting, but he got the hang of it and by the end we even had some laughter and smiles!
“See that wasn’t so bad Finley, was it?” “Remember champ, the harder you work for something, the greater you’ll feel when you achieve it.”
And that was exactly the emotion and feeling he was experiencing. I was proud of him, he was proud of himself, we had won #winning, #jobdone, #boxticked.
It was during this point I reached for my phone and messaged Richard (Coach Partridge)
“It’s raining outside, it’s cold, dark and I can’t be bothered boss to do my hills today“. To which Richard replied, “No problem.”
Almostly instantly, I felt like a hypocrit. Poor Fins, long day at school, almost the end of the week, shattered, desperately wanting to watch Lego Master, but instead ‘politely asked’ by Mum and Dad to do his long division Maths homework, which he did and he crushed it, feeling great about himself. And I had just bailed out of my session.
Come on Kev, practise what you preach. Get your arse into gear!
So after a few tears, some crashing and banging, hand waving, some shouting, I put on my flats and headed to my local hill and ran up and down it for 4 miles. In the dark, in the freezing cold, in the rain. And after the session, as I was running home, I felt great. I felt a foot taller, proud that I had got my act together and done my session.
I messaged Rich, who responded instantly.
“Good effort, these are the times that define us.”
And it reinforced the importance of that quote. The harder you work for something, the greater you’ll feel when you achieve it. Because there is no substitute for hard work. Not in running, not in life.
For sure, there will be tears on route, certainly some disappointments, set backs, times when you can’t be arsed, but at least you can truly say you’ve tried. You gave it all you had, despite all the wins and losses, despite achieving or not achieving.
After all, they say nothing worth having ever comes easy. Because what’s the point of having it if there’s no history, no memories attached, no 15 x hills.
So, do the homework, get out in the rain and go reap those rewards.
Next stop, Telford 10km.