March 22, 2019

Circumstances do not make the man, they reveal him. -James Allen

As I work everyday to look deep inside my soul, I often wonder what I have left to uncover… With so many thoughts and many more feelings, I must think to myself if I will ever heal the wounded boy inside. In August, I will step to the starting line in Leadville once again to answer this burning question inside me.

“A 100 mile race doesn’t start until mile 70.” -B.A. Ultra Runner I once listened to

Mile 70… it is where I failed in 2017

Mile 70… it is where I broke down in 2018

Mile 70… it is where I find out what has healed and what is still broken in 2019

Although I cannot predict the future nor do I want to fast forward to that moment in time… but I often wonder what this year will bring. I have fought so many battles since September. I have been beaten up by the universe over and over as she continually tests me with adversity and failure. I continue to fall short of her expectations as she continues to help me build my strength and fortitude in the face of hardships. As she continues to squeeze my own insecurities, I learn more and more about myself and the healing I must continue to work toward. My patience has been pushed beyond my perceived limits and I have been forced to persist beyond what I thought was possible. I know I must continue growing a little more everyday if I want to accomplish my goals in running and in life.

Just ahead of me is a great challenge… but I know on the other side is the key that opens the door to my future. The mountain is tall, and the climb is tough… yet I know there is no easy way around. I must overcome my weaknesses, climb over my fears, and move forward a little more every single day. I must continue to practice patience in myself as I persistently move forward with confidence and courage toward my new future.

The lessons I have learned in running are transferable to life… when the fog is thick and the night is dark, we may only see a few feet in front of us. As we become fearful of the unknown ahead, we mustn’t think too much as we regain our focus on the next step forward. Look up into the darkness and we are likely to trip. Peak behind and we are likely to fall. Trust in the process of moving forward knowing with enough steps in the right direction, we will arrive safely.

“My victory isn’t crossing the finish line. My victory is taking the next step after I want to quit.”

Published by Gary Stotler

Gary Stotler is a father, running, fitness, weight loss and personal development addict. Formally 400 pounds, Gary has naturally lost 200 pounds, created a coaching & speaking business and has become a 100 mile ultra-runner. Holding a degree in Psychology & Sociology, certifications from the National Academy of Sports Medicine as a personal trainer, mindset & behavioral modification coaching, a certification in DISC personality assessment coaching and he is a certified speaker, coach & mentor with the John Maxwell Team. Gary firmly believes, if we take One Step at a Time, nothing is impossible. He is determined to let his actions show people what is possible and hopes to help you shake up your thoughts, change your actions and create your future.

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