By Jim Owen, Founder and Chief Inspiration Officer, Center for Cowboy Ethics and Leadership
If you’re the kind of person who cultivates Try in your life, you probably find inspiration in the stories of others. And once you start looking, you discover there are stories of Try all around us. Recently I happened on a running blog with a story I found so moving that I wanted to share it with all of you.
The first-person account of Mike Cassidy, a runner in this year’s New York Marathon, the story starts out on a familiar note. Who among us hasn’t taken on a tough challenge, only to find ourselves with confidence faltering midstream? Although Mike is a seasoned marathoner and has trained hard, he finds himself feeling subpar this time out, and is soon struggling just to keep going against the chill wind.
It’s when he catches up to his hero, legendary runner Meb Keflezighi, that the story becomes truly extraordinary.
Mike realizes that his idol, too, is struggling to keep going after a spate of recent injuries. The vision of himself blazing past one of the best marathoners of all time fleetingly crosses his mind, but the way the race actually played out was even more amazing. Check out the photograph and you’ll see what I mean.
But this isn’t just a story about never giving up. Meb’s humility and spirit of generosity demonstrate what it means to be a hero. Beyond that, Mike discovers that he’s not only competing for himself. “In striving to be our best,” he realizes, “we could bring out the best in others.” His story of competing with heart gives added meaning to what Try is all about.