Every once in a while, someone comments on how much I work out, or why I go to the gym. And really, I’m just like most people, I get busy, or find myself too bogged down with life and work to make it fit, and I get out of a good routine. But really, it’s my sanity and I make myself go, for reasons way beyond the physical. This little comparison is something I always think about, and after trying to describe it to a few friends, I thought I’d make one of my “Lists.”  I hope it makes some sense…

9 Ways I think Marathon & Endurance Training Compares to Special Needs Parenting

In the beginning, and many times after, you feel this is crazy… this was a mistake… this was not meant for you… no way… why did you take this on… you can’t do it… and then you just start… and you’re on your way. But it’s only mile/year one.  25.2 more to go…

Pace yourself. Breath deeply. Start slowly. Have an emotional release now and then. But find your own rhythm. Realize this is the long haul, not the sprint.

There are many many days, where you can’t even get out of bed. But you find a way, to put one foot down, then the other, one in front of the other, and you start moving.

There are many many hours, you feel you can’t do this. You seriously contemplate quitting. And as you almost do, you realize you have momentum and you can’t stop.

There are many many moments, where you want to throw up on the side of the road. And then you pick yourself up, clean yourself off, and you start on your way again.

There are many many times, when you get discouraged. You feel after ten steps forward, you seem to be making two backward. Or you hit the dreaded plateau and doubt that you can go any further. Then something amazing happens, and you go full speed ahead, once again.

There are many many days, you feel like this is the hardest thing ever, and you don’t know how you possibly did it yesterday. But then tomorrow comes, and you realize, this wasn’t hard at all, that’s actually not so bad, and you can undertake more than you ever have yet.

There are many moments, when you feel so desperately alone. In silence and in a world that not many share, all you hear is the sound of your feet hitting the pavement. And you realize that sound means you’re putting ground behind you. That means you’re making progress. And you see a goal nearing ahead of you. That’s a feeling close to euphoria.

So many many moments during it all, you feel the struggle, you push yourself, you’re at your limits, and you’re physically mentally emotionally exhausted and drained. And at the end, you realize your life has changed. You’re a different person, for the inexplicable incredible better. You realize you are stronger, tougher, smarter, and capable of so much more than you ever thought was possible. You are someone you never knew existed. After it all, you are on top of the world. That is a feeling of euphoria.

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