This is the most important virtue that a runner must have, whether he/she is a beginner, average, or competitive one.
Patience is having more time to wait for things to unfold, as a result of your training program, before being reckless and do things the wrong way. As a result, you will regret for the things you have done. Your actions in running should be deliberate as there are NO “magic bullets” or “quick fix” in the sports we love.
In training, you need patience for you to develop your aerobic endurance and overall, improve on all the aspects of running. It does not take days or weeks to happen, but it would take months and years to develop your maximum potentials in the said sports. There are “ladders and steps” to overcome from one level to another level. Patience means you don’t have to go through a marathon (42K) training without experiencing what it takes to finish a simple 3K run. If you think you are good in 3K distance, you can go to the next step of trying a 5K run and so forth. However, there are training programs that you must follow in order to get the full potentials of your body’s capabilities if you want to excel in the distance you want. If you want to finish a marathon race, you need patience. Believe me if I tell you that I prepared for one year to experience what it takes to finish my first marathon. More patience is needed, if you desire to finish your first ultra marathon race.
Not adhering to patience by trying to do so much too soon in one’s mileage have always been the number one problem among runners. Not following the time-tested 10% rule of increasing one’s mileage on a weekly basis always brings runners to being injured and stale in their improvement. As a result, patience will always be the solution of this problem—patience to let the injury heals itself.
In races, runners would always forget what it takes to be patient. The tendency of most runners is to go out too fast once the gun is fired only to realize that mistake had been done when he/she is “crawling” to reach and cross the finish line. We always don’t have the patience to remember and stick to our race strategy and the training we have done in preparation for the race.
We need also patience in choosing our first running shoes and running attire. We have the tendency to look like the elite runners who are featured in “glossy” international runner’s magazine with the thought that we look “cool” and better runners than others. We have also the tendency to buy what we see for the first time not knowing that there are better fitting shoes with less cost if we waited and had time to look around. It is not the brand, color-combination, and the weight of the shoes that count most, but the proper fit to our feet. As for the running attire, you need patience to find out what is more comfortable for you considering our weather and humidity.
We need also patience in trying to find out what food and drinks that are good and work best for our performance. Depending on the distance you want to race or run, you can experiment on what nutritional needs for your training, pre-race, during race, and recovery period.
We need patience to find out what races we want to join in the future and patience to prepare for these races.
We need patience to finish what we have started. Because finishing a race is what matters most!
Like life itself, we need patience. There are lots of options but we need to have smart choices and decisions.
In running and in the race called “Life”, always think and remember…PATIENCE.
See you at the Starting Line!