The run starts out great. We're going, going, going, and I feel like I'm the best runner their ever was. My feet fly over the concrete like an eagle soaring in the sky....
But of course that's because we're going down a very steep hill. By the time we get to the bottom my body has realized that it's been running, my heart rate is up, and I can feel myself getting tired. Unfortunately, the run is only half way through and the worst is yet to come.
Each time we ran it, though, it got a little bit easier, and we got a little bit faster. I started to get encouraged by our improvement and found value in pushing myself just a little bit more each run. It was as if my value shifted from going through the motions to get a 2 mile run in to pushing myself to reach a new goal!
The first time we did this hill, we were at a 9:52 min/mi pace. As much as I hated it, we kept on running it at least one-two times a week in addition to our gym sprints. It took a few months, but the last time we ran it, we got our pace all the way down to 8:15 min/mi! YAY!
My moral of the story is this - perspective is everything. When you can find the "why" and the "value" behind your hard efforts, you can find a way to push yourself beyond what you thought was possible.