Saturday, September 4, 2010

"It is a rough road that leads to the heights of greatness." - Seneca

My last collegiate race was on April 29, 2007. I ran the 3000m Steeplechase in a final attempt at achieving my collegiate goal of qualifying for the Big East Championships. I finished in 10:11.21, a performance well below my goal.

There were several things going through my mind after that race. Primarily, I was disappointed that I had fallen short of my goal. Nevertheless, I was mostly satisfied in what I had achieved in my four years at Syracuse - improving my mile time by almost half a minute and my 5K time by almost three minutes. Most importantly, however, I had improved my fitness by more than I ever could have imagined. I was fortunate to have a stellar coaching system in Chris Fox and Brien Bell.

Following my move out to California, I had anticipated that I'd continue training at a competitive level and hopefully improve upon my personal best times, especially in the 5K. Through a series of events, including graduate coursework, other interests, and lack of a motivation due to the absence of team structured training, I allowed myself to lose most of what I had gained at Syracuse in terms of fitness. I tried several times to get back into serious training, but I didn't have the right mindset to achieve my goals, so those attempts were failures.

It wasn't until I really began looking at myself after graduating from USC that I realized the depressing nature of the situation. I had lost touch with the very thing that had given me the strength, determination, and competitive drive to strive for success and greatness in life. Although love (my amazing girlfriend, Myley) fell into my life unexpectedly and has given me purpose and motivation to succeed out here in California, I feel that I won't truly be successful until I get back into the shape that I was in at Syracuse.

So, here I find myself, blogging about my marathon training for the next year. It is unlikely that many people will pass through my page, but it is my hope that those who do will be motivated to find their way back onto the path towards greatness, however that may be defined in one's life.