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Today’s post is a little different than most. We’re going to start off with, yes . . . a reading assignment. Stop everything else, close the door, get comfortable and go read the following story posted yesterday by my friend, Joel Runyon. But be sure to get your butt back here pronto when you’re done (that is, after leaving him a nice little comment and saying HI for me!).

Here it is: The #1 Thing I Learned From 2nd Place In My First 10k
(on the Blog of Impossible Things)

Inspiring, right? And applicable in other areas of life beyond athletics?

Yeah, I thought so, too. That’s why I felt compelled to leave a comment on his site and, with his blessing (thanks, Joel!) turn that comment into today’s post here on mine!

Without further adieu . . .

Brilliant, Joel! Congrats to you on ‘showing up’ and following through. You’re so right . . . simply persisting, through the rough spots and the ‘plateaus,’ can often leave you as the last man standing.

I try to train my percussion students to enjoy when we reach a new, really difficult rhythm or technique (rather than complain as usual). Every new level we reach is another place that I see students get frustrated and altogether quit. Instead, those points should be viewed as the greatest opportunities. I tell them that although music shouldn’t be about competition, each obstacle reached, worked through and conquered, leaves the ‘other guys’ a little further behind in their dust.

The guts, time and energy that you mention is what separates the whiners from the winners. Kudos on both a great race and a great post!

In my comment, I point out the parallels between runners and musicians- how Joel’s lesson can (and should) be applied by both. But I know it doesn’t stop there . . .


  • In what other areas of your life can you benefit by simply being the one who ‘shows up’?
  • How would following through, when others won’t, put you ahead of the pack in your career?

Share with us in a comment below . . . I can’t wait to hear your ideas!