Jena and I ran a marathon. We researched the best training methods for first timers and developed our own schedule. The schedule we set was a rigid yet reasonable schedule and we stuck to it. Training every day for three months was pretty difficult at times but we found that doing it together was just what we needed to keep our gumption amongst us and get through it. One of us would be able to motivate the other if the other was not feeling like training that day. We gave each other the courage and strength to push through any setbacks and hurdles we faced whilst training for the marathon. We gave each other the motivation to find the gumption we had within us to keep moving.
As is most things in our relationship, Jena and I have always supported each other and find the strength and courage we need at any tough time in our lives to find the gumption to keep moving and push through the adversity and conquer any goal we set for ourselves.
All goals we set for ourselves are just that, goals that we have set, not that are set for us. We approve any task, activity, or relationship that is presented to us. We always have the capability to decline such an invitation. But, when we decide to accept an invitation, we are all in. Jena and I do not give up. We always find the strength to finish our goals and do so with the mindset and determination that we can do hard things and that we are our only true obstacle. Because, once we overcome any adversity in completing our goal, there is a clear path towards accomplishing that goal.
In order to overcome such adversity, we must dig deep inside our self to find the courage and strength to move above and/or through the challenge we are facing. For it is only once we have found the gumption needed to overcome the adversity will we actually be able to move past it. The most difficult thing in overcoming an obstacle is not the act of doing so, but developing the mindset and strength to realize that it can be done.
In the middle of training Jena and I took a trip around Europe and Africa. During the trip, training ensued with no sign of slowing down or being hindered by the travel. Not even jet lag weighed us down either, for we researched and then confirmed through our own experience, that running and drinking plenty of fluids will help alleviate any jet lag extremely quickly. Our jet lag didn’t actually even present itself since we were running so much.
While we continued training on our trip we realized that running through a new city was the most incredible way to experience so much more of that city. We mapped out our runs through places we would not normally have visited, whether for not being ‘touristy’, not having a landmark worth visiting, or just being a suburb. This allowed us to see parks, hidden, local shopping centers, and tons of suburbs. It was extraordinary.
Traveling is one of our most beloved passions and we have traveled together many times. We have become fluid in packing, planning, and executing our travels. We both have different strengths in traveling and unconsciously ensure each of us takes the lead on that with which we are stronger to ensure a more efficient and enjoyable trip. After so many years and trips, it becomes second nature for us to do this.
I love to research the best activities and destinations to try and explore on our trips, and I did so for this trip as well. I researched and planned this trip incredibly down to every last detail. I planned, for instance, what day, time, and in what sequence we would eat, break, and tour the city of Barcelona. I did this, which was a lot more than my usual planning for a trip, because this was a special trip, as I proposed on top of a mountain at sunset in Barcelona.
Three days after Jena and I got engaged in Barcelona, we flew back to our hometown and ran the Los Angeles Marathon.
Running the marathon after our trip and the engagement made it ever so much more sweet and enjoyable. Our family was waiting at the finish line for us with flowers and love. We had just completed our European and African trip, gotten engaged, trained for and now finished a marathon.
The long walk on the beach after completing the marathon was reminiscent of the incredible new life awaiting us after our long marathon of a life that led us to this new life beginning, when our lives began to become one.