Balance is one of the keys to living a healthy life. In our own individual journeys, we experience different struggles and triumphs that are uniquely ours, molding us into the people we become. Running reminds me a lot of this journey. We learn that when we put our minds to something, we can achieve it. Whether it’s pushing through another mile, or landing your dream job, anything in life is possible with hard work and dedication.

One of the reasons why I love running is because it gives me structure. During training for a race, I would make myself get up at 5 a.m. to go run 3 miles in the New York cold. This taught me the meaning of early bird gets the worm. If you want that promotion, you have to be willing to wake up early to get into the office with enough time to get a cup of coffee.

Say you really wanted to slim down to reach a strong and slender frame for a big event. That means cutting out the late night partying filled with sugary cocktails and getting enough sleep, dieting and exercising regularly. Training for a race, for a runner’s example, gets your mind in that motivational frame where you driven to do what ever it takes to win, finish, or achieve that goal.

I have gone from training pretty much all year to scaling down my running significantly. I went from running about 25 miles a week, to now running three to five days a week with 2-4 short miles. It is a huge difference from my rigorous half marathon training last winter that I loved. I learned disciple, sacrifice, and the sweet taste of victory.

I am happy right now to scale things down and take the skills I have learned during my hard core training time. I learned how important balance is. I don’t have to run 25 miles to be strong. And in the same token, when I am feeling lazy, one mile is better than no mile.

Same goes with diet. I have cut meat out from my diet, focusing on a plant-based diet. While I eat fresh vegetables daily, I will treat myself to a small portion of ice cream and other goodies. It’s all about moderation.

After taking a month break from running, I am finally at a consistent schedule again. My new running route is full of steep hills and I had to learn to pace my strides, my breath, and teach my mind to push on when I didn’t want to. But over time I have become able to conquer these hills. Oh, how it hurts so good.

Even when we fail, we can still pick ourselves up and give it another shot. Apply that to anything in life. So you didn’t get into that college? Focus on getting good grades and reapply next semester.

Always be ambitious.

Here is how you can conquer anything you set your mind to:

1. Believe that you can do anything. Sometimes that means lying to yourself, such as telling yourself to go only one more mile when really you plan on pushing through two more. Tell yourself you can do it and you will start to believe it.

2. Set goals that are realistic. Push yourself out of your comfort zone and always reach for higher goals. Start off with small goals, like eliminating one junk food each week, and work up to a big one like loose 10 pounds.

3. Never give up. You can’t win at everything in life. Champions are made when the going gets rough, not when things are easy. Be dedicated. Be humble. Want to be better.  Don’t be afraid to get back out there and try again.

Do you have any tips to conquering goals in life? Tell us in the comments!

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