Lew Harter, a veteran member of the RTY family and introspective runner, constantly shares his wisdom in the Run The Year Facebook group. He has generously given us permission to convert his posts into blogs, and here are a few of his entries that really struck a chord:
April 9th, 2018
Here's a post from two years ago. It's just as true today, so I thought I'd share it again. May we all be committed. Have a great day RTY family:
"I read a post the other day about interest vs commitment. It really resonated with me. Words like "maybe", and "try" are part of the language of interest. A great many people are interested in getting in better shape, or losing weight, or becoming a better runner, or anything else, but they never really commit to it. That's the way I was for many years. Any time I said I would try to do something, it almost guaranteed failure when things got tough. "Try" is like an escape hatch. When what you are trying gets really hard, you can quit and say, "I tried". That changed for me in January 2012. That's when "try" became "will". I committed to running. One small word made all the difference. There is no escape hatch in the word "will". The same word saw me through my first marathon in 2013. I was scared, but I committed. I was scared that I would fail, but "will" saw me through. With "try" I would never have gotten there.
I say all this not to try to convince you that there's something special about me. I assure you, there's not. I say this to convince you there's something special about "will". I would urge you to discard "try" from your vocabulary, and take up "will" instead. You'll be glad you did. And I bet you'll be amazed at what you can achieve with commitment. Take care friends."
March 22nd 2018
"In the beginning I ran to achieve things. To spend time with my daughter, to get in better shape, to lose weight, to lower my blood pressure, to run a 5K. My goals became bigger, and my sights were set ever higher.
I realized the other day that at some point in time, my reason for running had changed. My perception of running had changed. Running had been a vehicle to achievement. Now, I don't need a reason to run. Running is a reason unto itself. I don't run because I have to train for something. I don't run because I want to lose weight. I don't run because of RTY 2018. I run because I want to run. I run because I enjoy running. I run every single day, not because I feel obligated, but because I feel privileged to run.
Those of you that have experienced this understand. For those of you who haven't reached that point, I sincerely hope that you do one day. It adds a whole new dimension to running.
Have a great night RTY family"
Lew has discovered his love of running over the last six years. It all started when he and his daughter agreed to train for a 5k race together. That first commitment opened the floodgates, and they ran their way through 5k, 10k, half marathon, and even a full marathon in the following year and a half! Now, he feels better than he ever has in his life, and has found his place among the other dedicated RTY runners. Lew is an invaluable party of the RTY community, constantly encouraging his fellow members and offering a unique perspective on running. The people he has connected with since signing up for RTY also inspire him to do better. "Whenever I find my energy running low, or find myself wondering if I can meet the next challenge, my RTY family is always there to help. I’ve made so many great friends from all walks of life," says Lew. He draws motivation from the other group members and also adds his own words of wisdom to the group discussions.
Lew is a beautiful example of what we at Run The Edge love so much about our little challenge. It allows us, and others, to be impactful and impacted. Thank you Lew for embodying what it means to Run The Edge!