I ran a marathon relay over the weekend! I was in a team of four, and the way it worked was: everyone had to run a lap, one at a time, in the same order until you were done. So, that’s 16 laps, four per person. No problem, right?
It was harder than I thought it would be.
Lap 3 was especially hard. I’d done it twice already. And cooled down twice. And I still had to do it one more time. It was the first time I noticed potential shortcuts. Of course I didn’t take them, but I thought it was funny how I didn’t think about cheating until I started to feel desperate. I think that’s true about anything that’s hard or when you’re really feeling the pressure. If you have plenty of time, energy, and resources to get the job done, you don’t think about cutting corners (I hope).
I thought about walking. And not just a quick minute to recharge (which I do normally), but taking my time and enjoying the lovely day and beautiful scenery.
But I didn’t. I picked up the pace.
Because even though I was out there by myself, what kept me going was knowing that my team was waiting for me to break through the trees and wave at them from across the lake, showing that I didn’t let them down.
I’m not big on team sports, but I am big on teamwork, and I think a relay is the perfect combination of being on your own with a dose of accountability.