How Adapting To The Situation Can Save Your Life

| June 18, 2014

Marathon-runners EDITORIAL – My first marathon race was about as miserable of a situation as I’ve ever been in. While I technically made it, I just about had to crawl to the finish line. To put it bluntly, compared to what I’d thought I’d do, I’d done all but failed.

But, I have found that some of the most valuable lessons are often learned through such failure (most of them, actually), though learning the lesson doesn’t happen automatically. To really learn from your failures requires you to be completely honest about what didn’t work and why.

And, so it was with my pitiful showing in my first marathon. I knew that if I was going to learn from it, I needed to take a good, hard look at where I had gone wrong. There certainly was plenty to choose from.

Having the “I already know it all” mentality had hurt me. Funny how that’s the case so many times in life, huh? I just assumed that my shorter mileage races would translate into running marathons, so I prepared as I had done before. I didn’t consider the differences involved. And that was a big mistake.

The truth is, there are a lot of differences between marathon and shorter distance running—things like pacing, hydration, etc., can make a huge difference on race day. And all of this must be considered during your training leading up to the race

You can’t simply do what you’ve always done as you prepare and then come race day suddenly try to change things up and expect to perform well. It just doesn’t work that way. That’s why proper training is so important.

And while you may never run a marathon yourself, I hope you can see how this applies in your own life as well. Change, and having to adapt to it, is no longer optional. It’s something we must deal with on an almost daily basis. Whether we like it, or not.

I always think of the dinosaurs when thinking of a situation where something doesn’t adapt and what the consequences can be. When the ice age hit, the dinosaurs did not (or could not) adapt to the new weather, and now are extinct as a result. So, don’t be a dinosaur.

You simply can’t do things the way you have always done them. You have to adapt to the current situation. In matters of principle, stay firm, definitely. On other things, however, you must be open to change or risk becoming obsolete. Always be ready and willing to adapt to the situation. It’s the key to not just successfully running a marathon, but the key to life itself.

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12 Comments on "How Adapting To The Situation Can Save Your Life"

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  1. Wally says:

    You are so right. Daily one must adjust to what life throws at you.

  2. Monica Griffin says:

    Another great article, Jay.

  3. Stephanie says:

    Good advice as always!! Signed, FORMER Dinosaur

  4. hope bishop says:

    I used to be so inflexible on everything. Everything was black and white with no Gray areas. It sure has made life easier to let things flow and learn to adjust myself. I sometimes will still fall back into this pattern ( its hard to change 40 years of behavior)Love this reminder.

  5. cammy mulligan says:

    Great article Jay

  6. Chick says:

    Great article Jay! Adapting can be tough sometimes, but by not doing so life can be a lot tougher on us.