Saturday, November 24, 2012

Is There Really Such Thing As Failure?

Image by @gapingvoid (

I think if you take action, there is no failure, for the doing itself is success. Think how many times we just don't DO.

At the end of October I ran my second half-marathon (the Miami Halloween Half).  I ran it last year and "trained" quite a bit, with several 8 mile runs beforehand. Even with the training, last year it took me 3 hours and 16 minutes to complete. (Yeah, I run like a turtle).

This year I was ill prepared due to travel and other things getting in the way of any proper preparation. I desperately wanted to find an excuse NOT to run this year... "I'm not ready" "I didn't prepare" "I won't be able to finish" etc. But in the end I lived up to my commitment (to myself and the $90 I paid to register for the event).

I ran, and was so excited that I did. I started very strong and for the first 10 miles I was way ahead of last year's pace and excited that I would beat my prior time, probably by 8 or 10 minutes. Then, with 3 miles to go, I hit a wall - mentally and physically - and I was convinced I could not continue.

I struggled to keep moving forward. Fighting back tears and pangs of a psychosomatic asthma attack (I had asthma as a kid, but haven't had any issues for more than 25 years, so I know the sudden wheezing and shortness of breath was self-induced... maybe as that excuse to stop I had been looking for...)

But I kept moving.  Barely running, probably at a pace slower than I could have walked... but running nonetheless.

And I finished. 6 minutes SLOWER than last year.

Did I fail?  No!  I finished.  I took action.  I did something I set out to do, albeit, not quite as well as I had hoped.

Many lessons learned, including the true value of training and preparation... and not just for a half-marathon.

I may have failed to reach my goal, but I succeeded in completing another half-marathon, and I learned a great deal along the way.

I'll put this failure in the "win" column... until next year!

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Saturday, November 10, 2012

Light. Hearted. NYC.

Having relocated to South Florida in 1994 I have learned to live with the annual threat of Hurricanes and the recurring stress of a six month long Hurricane Season each and every year.  I've had my own brushes with the wrath of wicked Wilma in 2005 and understand firsthand what it's like to go without power for two weeks.  My heart goes out to everyone in the Northeast who has been affected by Sandy, including family and friends.  Mother nature has an uncanny way of reminding us what really matters by kicking us hard...where it counts.

As a small effort to honor New York (my home town) and remind folks how easy it is to contribute to the American Red Cross, we (the team at gapingvoid/Social Object Factory) produced this short animation called "Light Up New York."  We hope it shines a light on the needy up north and helps encourage donations to a very worthy cause.  Please share the animation if you are so inclined, and donate if you can.  Thanks!

Can't see the video? Click Here.

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