As for why I’m running, it’s for my kids.
I’ve never been a particularly athletic person. My kids have enormous athletic potential. I could see that they weren’t internalizing their coaches’ various feedback. They didn’t see how to connect the feedback with a disciplined, growth plan over time. So, I committed to using myself as a teaching tool, and showing my kids, with my own body, how to set a plan to achieve something impossible, through deliberate training over time.
Over the years I prepared for a long race, I’ve had setbacks, injuries, etc. I’ve had to loop in coaches, physical therapy, etc. But I’ve kept at it. At each setback, I involved the kids in a discussion about how I will deal with it and regain momentum. I won’t “know” for years whether this has helped the kids visualize what that methodical process looks like for themselves, but the initial data are favorable.