“I had as many doubts as anyone else. Standing on the starting line, we’re all cowards.”
-Alberto Salazar, 3-time winner of the NYC marathon
Having all the necessary ingredients does not guarantee a meal. Having potential does not equate to excellence. Knowing the solution to a problem doesn’t mean it will be solved. It’s what we do with the resources available to us that mean everything. Before a race there are no guarantees. Just people, standing shoulder to shoulder waiting anxiously for a gun to sound. No one has anything figured out and no map lays out the sure path to victory. It’s not until the bang that the elite make themselves known. This is when being nervous is trumped by the burning desire to take control and conquer the challenges ahead. Winners adjust to poor conditions and tough environments. Any time fate says, “no,” they find a way to up the anti and say, “yes.” Coward to start? Sure. People are people. Everyone faces fear. We may even question our ability every now and again. But when the gun goes off, a true competitor knows that there are two options: rise up and get what you want, or walk away wishing that you had.