H. Jackson Brown, Jr, author of the book Life's Little Instruction Book, wrote, "Strive for excellence, not perfection." That little quote has be thinking - thinking enough to write a blog post after staying away from here for the past two months.
I'm not gonna lie - running and me haven't exactly been getting along lately. It's been hard, it hurts (thanks to plantar fasciitis), and the heat + humidity of summer haven't helped. Constantly comparing myself to the runner I was a couple years ago also isn't doing me any favors. However, I'm still plugging along & have decided to adopt the philosophy of Excellence vs Perfection.
What is "excellence"? Excellence means I'm doing the best I can in that moment. It is achievable with effort and planning and can result in a sense of accomplishment. You are willing to be wrong and if you make mistakes, you can be accepting of those mistakes, determine what you can change and what is out of your control, and what you can do differently in the future to achieve the excellence you seek.
The idea of "perfection" implies there is nothing better & it's largely unattainable. Failure is inevitable and the belief that you'll never be good enough is a very real possibility. News flash - I'm a perfectionist and my perfectionist tendencies have been doing a number on me in many areas of my life, not just my running. I'm working hard to get past this. It's not easy, believe me.
Today, focusing on the best I could do in that moment, resulted in 4 miles that finally showed some progress. I posted the insta with the hashtag #progressnotperfection because that's what today really was. Maybe tomorrow or the next day the results will be different. In fact, they most likely will be. But in that 4 mile run this morning I worked toward achieving excellence & I'm happy with the result.
"Life doesn't require that we be the best, only that we try our best." - H. Jackson Brown, Jr. For the foreseeable future, I am simply trying to do my best. It's all I can ask of myself.