Perspective can change everything.
Perspective is the reason we feel victorious or defeated. Perspective is how two people can look at the same situation with two very different sets of eyes. Perspective is often a matter of life experience, of looking back or just a matter of circumstance. Perspective is more than being an optimist or a pessimist.
The last 4 or 5 days have been a lesson in perspective for me, but let's only focus on one example:
As you should know by now, I had been training for a 5k. My first 5k. The 5k in question was The Color Vibe and it took place Saturday at 9am. I had been training for months. Every week I ran at least 3 times a week. The last month or so I'd been running at LEAST one 5k during the week in preparation for running one "for real." I had gotten myself up to running 3.5 miles. My joints were ready. My muscles were ready. I was ready. Bring on the 3.12 miles!!!
Our little foursome traveled up to the location, stretched, got our bibs, drank water and got ready to run. We got into the first wave of people, I started my Run Keeper and began to run. I maintained my 10:30 pace the entire time. I felt amazing. The sun was shining brightly (which was a change from my normal 6am runs) and causing some excessive sweating, but I knew I was ready for this. I was tuned into my Fitz and The Tantrums Pandora station. The course was wildly confusing so I continued to ask the volunteers which way I was going. I followed their directions and the group of runners ahead of me. I knew from all my training that I should be running for seven full songs, part of an eighth song and 2 commercial breaks. So when I was able to see the finish line just toward the end of song 6, I got concerned. Something felt wrong. I was exhausted and ready to quit, but something wasn't adding up. So I finished the run just as I finished song seven, grabbed a bottle of water and opened Run Keeper. 2.73 miles. What a disappointment! As I later found out from the rest of my foursome, toward the end of the first wave of runners they realized they had directed people incorrectly. They changed it and the majority of runners ran much closer to 3.12, but the first wave did not. I felt like I cheated - albeit completely on accident. I know I can achieve the 5k goal in March (when I run my second one which I've already signed up for and paid for...) but I was looking forward to having reached it at The Color Vibe. I was feeling really REALLY down about it, even though it became kind of a joke within our little group...
Until I got home. After taking a shower and cleaning up, the icky feeling that had been slowly growing inside of me took over entirely. I got sick. Really REALLY sick. Without being too detailed I'm fairly confident I acquired a 24 hour flu or bug of some sort. I had a fever, chills, pains, etc. My fever finally broke over night and I started to feel better. I'm still not entirely better, but I'm pretty damn close to it.
So I'm no longer disappointed in my 2.73 mile run that should have been a 5k. I'm now really fucking impressed at my ability to run 2.73 miles in 28:43 while coming down with the flu. I'm a monster.
Perspective really is a fun little devil...