This seems to be my mantra over the past few weeks. I'm training for my first ever marathon and as someone that happens to be running quite a lot these days - I'm far from a runner. My running gear is all hand downs and I often step out looking like I've just cleaned my flat or may start gardening.
However, the whole experience has inspired me so far. Sure, it's made me rediscover my has-been athlete days and I find myself daydreaming of digging volleyballs again. I feel strong and energetic in a way I haven't felt in a long time. And it's the perfect excuse to eat all the burgers I want (okay, so I did that before).
But there's also been an important lesson that marathon training has taught me. Somedays (and in the case of the past two weeks) you just have to show up. There are early mornings and late nights when it feels next to impossible to get moving. I would rather curl up, have a beer, and watch another episode of Bosch.
But there is only one thing that a marathon needs from you. It needs you to show up. Your strong legs, strong heart, and kick butt attitude will come. Your badass runner will emerge and your muscles will remember your pace. But you have to set this all free - the marathon needs you to show up.
When you show up - your run won't always be fast or pretty. But it's the fact that you got your shoes on and stepped out into that cold, wet, and windy night. That's when the marathon begins real.
Show up and your legs will know what to do - mainly because you have been showing up for weeks now.
More important than the output, though, is the act itself. The act of doing it every day. When you commit to a practice, you will certainly have days when you don't feel like it, when you believe it's not your best work, when the muse deserts you. But, when you keep your commitment, the muse returns. When you keep your commitment, the work happens. It doesn't matter if anyone reads it, buys it, sponsors it or shares it. It matters that you show up.