Relentless Forward Progress

I’m linking up today with the Wednesday Word linkup, hosted by Debbie! Click the link below to see who else is linking up and to join in. Today’s word is tenacious.

Deb Runs

The word tenacity, and the nature of being tenacious, means being very determined. It means persisting in the face of adversity. Runners of all levels and experience, by nature, are very tenacious. We make goals and cling to them. Whether it’s to run for 10 minutes without stopping or qualify for the Boston Marathon, each goal takes a lot of hard work and dedication.


Running teaches us to keep putting one foot in front of the other. It takes grit, toughness, tenacity, and probably a little bit of crazy and stubbornness too. At some point, you’re going to feel like you can’t go any further. Your head will say “you can’t” but your heart will say “you have to.” Tenacity especially shows up in ultramarathons. It takes an awful lot of determination and will to cover distances greater than 26.2 miles on foot.


Lately, I have been reading a book by ultramarathon legend Pam Reed called ‘The Extra Mile.’ The whole book is great, but I especially like this short quote:

“… desire and commitment are so important in ultra events. There is a certain amount of technique involved in running, but as the distances get longer, the race depends more on the heart than on the legs.”

I think when we approach something with a tenacious spirit, we will often surprise ourselves at what we can accomplish.

How does tenacity play a role in your life?

14 thoughts on “Relentless Forward Progress”

  1. I love that quote! It is so true. I never thought I’d run a full, and here I am 2 weeks away from running my first. I just couldn’t imagine that kind of mileage. But I think running definitely teaches you patience. If you just keep going, the extra mile will come. Just keep going.

    Funny, but this has translated well to tedious tasks in my every day life. Like this summer, we were inundated with carrots from our CSA and our own garden. Carrots that needed to be washed, peeled, and cut up. I would look at a mound of carrots, and just think “ok, one at a time and you’ll get through these.” Sure enough, I did. Hopefully I can have the same mind set on race day!

    1. Just keep going is something I have thought to myself many times during long runs and races. Don’t focus on the distance left or even what you’ve covered, just keep going forward.

  2. I think it takes a lot of tenacity to go further than 13.1 — something I’ve never done!

    I can be very tenacious as an advocate for my animals, too. When a vet told me my cat wasn’t a candidate for sub-q fluids many years ago, and had clearly given up on her, I changed vets.

    Cleo lived about another 2 years — she got her sub-q fluids, too. Wasn’t easy, but it helped her a great deal.

  3. That is a terrific quote. One of my work friends runs ultras like it ain’t no thang and I am amazed by her. Is an ultra on your horizon, Meagan?

    1. I know of people like your work friend and they are very impressive! I don’t know how they do it. I’d definitely say an ultra is on my horizon, but bear in mind the horizon can often be further than it looks 😉

    1. Sometimes that’s what it comes down to – you have to remember how bad you want something and how much time you’ve put into preparing for that moment. Heading over to read your race report now!! 🙂

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