In his late 70’s my father’s pacemaker had reached the end of its life expectancy and needed to be replaced along with the wire that attached to his heart. The doctor wanted to test to see how well my father’s heart would function at rest without the aid of the pacemaker to determine how well a replacement operation would go. Well, it didn’t as soon as the doctor turned off the pacemaker my father passed out; he would tell you he died.
The doctor gave him the choice of living with the existing pacemaker and when it failed dying or having an operation to replace the pacemaker that only had a 10% chance of successes or in other words, a 90% chance of dying during the operation.
My father decided to have the operation. On the day of the operation he told the doctor that he did not want anesthesia; that he wanted to be awake and be able to feel during the operation. He did not want to die in his sleep.
“If I’m going to die, I want to die awake, aware, and able to feel my life.”
And so it was, holding the attending nurses hand and enduing the pain of being cut and split open, he did not even whimper once during the entire operation, nor did he pass-out from the pain.
This my friends is ‘Tenacity’
So why did I tell you this story? Well because, although my example is an extreme case, I have witness this tenacity first hand in our running community. Runners are the most tenacious bread of people I have ever met. They push their minds and body to the most extreme limits and when they hit their wall the find a way to overcome, to endure, to complete the task or goal. Their only concern is to get to the end.
The only way a runner, I mean a true runner, will stop is if its physically imposable for them to continue. It’s not for a medal, it’s not for a prize of any sort, its not even to impress anyone. It’s only to prove to themselves they can do it.
So strong is this tenacity, if they should not complete the goal, they work harder and practice longer so that they can try again and again until they have attained the goal. These runners will never quit…. When the runner attains their goal they don’t sit back and revel in their accomplishment, no the runner looks for that next run, a more challenging run than the last to push their limits even further.