Business is Like Running

As you know, I have returned to running after a 6 year absence. Yes, it has been 6 years since I ran my last 10 km race, and in a few weeks, I am going to do it again. I was 34 last time…40 now… I am so excited and I am ready to go and just have fun. I started back running on June 1, 2014. Here is my top 3 ways that running a business is like actually running…

1. There are ups and downs….and not in equal proportions…Some of my running routes are amazing. I always run in a loop from my house and on some of the routes it is uphill almost the entire way! This is true of how it feels in business. It feels as if you go uphill and work so hard most of the time, and enjoy a little thrill of downhill adrenaline periodically at best. For my business, I am not covered by MSP or extended health, so I am constantly trying to find ways to make myself affordable, while still maintaining a profit. Then there are the armchair nutrition experts who give advice and suggestions even though they do not have an education in nutrition….but we buy Flintstones kids vitamins and OUR kids are FINE!! Well, there is just no converting some people to quality products…or one of my favorites…I have a nutrition question, but I don’t want to hear an answer from anyone who sells vitamins. Wow…do you know how much effort, time and education goes into developing your own business? If I put that much time into running, I would be training for an ultra marathon! The cashier at the big box store has ZERO interest in your health and honestly could care less if you are happy, healthy, absorbing your nutrients or achieving your optimal health goals. Her job is not dependent on your satisfaction, unlike me, in business for myself. I honestly do care about each of my clients and I want the best for you. But, even still, people continue to purchase inferior quality products with no skepticism of the big box, whereas an honest, hardworking business person is someone to be feared. Hmm…

2. The thrill is in the chase. When I see another runner, I try hard to catch them. I want to beat that person and prove myself. Not that I have a huge ego…I just enjoy pushing my body to its limit. I know I will recover, I know I can lean on my health. I like having someone to chase. The same goes for the person running behind me…I want to go faster than them. I want to keep them behind me far enough that I can no longer hear them panting. Running can be monotonous, so playing little games like this helps the time pass. Same in business. I love thinking of new ideas. I think about my business all day long, sometimes developing many ideas each day. I act on some, talk to others, bounce ideas around to other business people. It is so fun and keeps my mind active and busy. I love my field, I love learning about the current issues, research and products in nutrition. I love learning about healthcare, growing food and health in the context of modern living. Both running and business keep my mind active and interesting!

3. If it isn’t a challenge, don’t do it! Business is one of the biggest challenges! I was not brought up in a business family. My parents and family members all had government jobs with nice pensions and benefits. My parents dreamed that I would become a police officer or a teacher. Well, since I don’t enjoy kicking ass on the beat, nor did I enjoy being a classroom teacher enough to do it for 30 years, I went into business for myself so that I could run the show, and kick ass with my own goals and dreams. Running was a challenge too. 6 years of not running, and then June 1st I decided to get going. There was a lot stacked against me…lack of time, commitment to a new routine, my dislike of pain…and sweat. But I decided that my health was more important than my dislike of anything. That I loved myself more than I disliked anything, and that love was stronger than excuses. No time? No problem…put the baby in the jogger and put the kids on their bikes and go around the local track a couple of times. Commit to a new routine? No problem…even when we were camping, I was out running. I loved the results I was getting and I loved doing something healthy for ME…ME TIME…and my family supported me 1000%. Sweat? Pain? Now I love it. I love feeling the fat melt off. I love having to buy new clothes because my old ones are too BIG!!! Pushing through the challenges and giving up excuses in running and in business are the only ways to make it work. To be successful in business, you have to enjoy pain, sweat, commitment and new routines. You have to give up the excuses and just make things work. You have to shine when it is raining and thrive when it is time to reap the rewards. That is what I am going to be thinking on that 10 K run…time to thrive! I am 40 and in some of the best shape of my life!

 

In health,

K

 

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