Sometimes you have these great ideas. Or at least they seem like great ideas at first. I try to get my students to understand that while those first ideas seem wonderful and creative they should resist the urge to go with their first thoughts and they should give their ideas time to develop and improve. Those who listen eventually realize the truly great ideas come later.
Two weeks ago I had a great idea. Pretty much on a whim I decided I wanted to run a 5k race. I found a local race and pre-registered because this was a great idea.
When you give your ideas time to develop and improve, you realize potential problems and you give your brain the time to creatively solve those problems before anything bursts into flames or before anyone loses a limb. You have the opportunity to bounce your ideas off of other people and often they can provide some helpful feedback.
Like, for example when you tell them you’re going to run a 5k they might tell you that you’re not a runner. Or at least you haven’t been a runner since college and that was a long time ago. Perhaps they’d tell you that normal people actually train for several weeks prior to running a 5k. They might even tell you that it’s December and that it’s going to be very cold when you run. After gaining all this helpful information most people would amend their original idea and sign up for a race in early spring instead.
Yet I was convinced that my idea was great. I did listen to advice from my marathon running friend (who now thinks I’m a crazy person) and I ended up going for a practice run last Wednesday. Big mistake. I thought I was going to die. My legs are still sore from that little excursion and I almost talked myself into being reasonable and putting off the race.
But my idea was still great. So I got up early this morning and tried to convince myself that 28 degrees was not really all that cold for an early morning 5k, even in short sleeves. And somehow I did it. I didn’t have to stop and I kept a pretty good pace and I even finished with a respectable time. I don’t understand why but I might have enjoyed it. It reminded me of running around the Winthrop lake at night when I was in better shape.
Of course I know this was a terrible idea. I just got lucky this time. Or at least I feel lucky while the endorphins are still circulating. Tomorrow will be another thing entirely. I just hope I’ll be able to walk.