Overcoming Your Running Limit

What is your running limit?


Defined as

not to be done, endured, etc, without any degree of reason or propriety.

If you are like me, challenges can rev up your engine. They get you in the right frame of mind to go out and tackle a task that you seriously did not think you were capable of.

Running involves trusting your gut, if something isn’t working, you have to find out what does and drive on. If you are to run your best you have to think the impossible IS possible.

The great King of Comedy, Steve Harvey has a radio show I listen to every morning on my way to work on FM 101.1.

He does a short motivational commentary every day at 5am where he speaks of the power of God.

You don’t even have to be a believer to appreciate the power of positive thinking. One morning he was talking about how when we struggle in life, and in this case, our running performances. We have to remember what he calls ‘the push factor‘.

What is The Push Factor?

When you lift a weight, it requires the muscles to push and pull against a resistance to get it off the ground.

It will remain fixed, motionless on the floor and do you no good unless you lift it, unless you push. The push factor correlates with running as well.

Steve’s early morning message hit me because I never heard the phrase PUSH used in the manner he used it. Pray Until Something Happens!

If your race performances are lagging or you feel as though you are not good enough to be a great runner than keep pushing, keep trying until something happens.

The Nitty Gritty

I have been running since I was 15 years old. I am now 35 and still kicking down doors with the way I think.

If you watched the 2012 US Olympic Trials Marathon you might have noticed that the first and 3rd place finishers who made the Olympic team going to London are 37 and 36 years old.

Meb Kheflezghi (37 years young) and Abdi Abdiraham (36 years young) went on to win and take the last available slot to make the team, respectively.

This whole idea that to run well you have to be younger, genetically gifted is total BS.

Haile Gebressalassie, former world record holder for the marathon (2.03.59) was quoted as saying

If your mind is old then you have already lost the battle. If you think young you will run young.

Impossible Thinking

Runners self-sabotage their ability by thinking that running fast is for more genetically gifted athletes.

Why should you believe this?

Do you think Brian Sell would have made the Olympic Team by giving up after running in high school.

He was a 10.06 2-miler. I ran 9.46 and yet he ended up running 2.10 for the marathon and making the 2008 Olympic Marathon Team. That is powerful! Who would have thought he was capable of that.

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Brian did and that is the difference. He wanted it and you have to as well if you are going to make the next big jump in your racing.

Tim Ferris, author of The 4-Hour Workweek: Escape 9-5, Live Anywhere, and Join the New Rich (Expanded and Updated) and owner of The Blog of Tim Ferris Experiments in Lifestyle Design said something that truly hit home with me as I write about so called ‘impossible’ limitations. Check this out…

It’s lonely at the top. Ninety-nine percent of people in the world are convinced they are incapable of achieving great things, so they aim for mediocre. The level of competition is thus fiercest for ‘realistic’ goals, paradoxically making them the most time- and energy-consuming… The fishing is best where the fewest go, and the collective insecurity of the world makes it easy for people to hit home runs while everyone else is aiming for base hits. There is just less competition for bigger goals.

Impossibility is not a fact and I can assure from my own experiences that you will run across people in your life who do not believe you are capable of greatness. You are! You know that old saying ‘misery loves company’?

What you need to do is kick that company to the curve and start seeing yourself as the champion that you are.

I don’t care where you are currently at in your training. If you truly want this, to make a huge leap in your race efforts than you need to create a new outlook blueprint.

I still have as my goal, to run 2.15 for the marathon. (retired in 2018 but surely gave it a run, no regrets having run 2:19:35)

I believe in in 100% and know it is possible.

What are your motivations? Look to motivational people such as Haile for reference when you’re feeling down and think your racing days are over. They are not!

Big achievers think of an impossibility as a myth.

It simply isn’t true or at the very least it could be, they just don’t choose to believe in it.

Doers run around impossibilities until they become possible. Years ago, a human being running the mile under 4 minutes was impossible…until it was done. The Bible says

What does it profit, my brethren, if someone says he has faith but does not have works?

But someone will say, You have faith and I have works. Show me your faith without works, and I will show you my faith by my works.


What that basically means is you are going to have to work to get the results you want, but if your faith and belief in your training are working hand-in-hand with your hard work, you are going to produce some killer race results.

Adidas has had an add campaign that has been out for the past few years called ‘Impossible is Nothing’.


Running fast won’t come about by simply thinking you can move mountains. Mountains are moved everyday but they are moved with work, dedication and focus to get the job done. Mountains are moved, literally, by the push and pull of machinery created by man.

Christ said

If you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can tell that mountain to move from here to there, and it will obey you

You not only need a great coaching plan but to think anything is possible in a race because it is true.

If you have done the proper training, tapered correctly, the results can be quite dramatic but you have to think it is possible first and you have to make a plan of action.

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