What does acceptance mean for me and why it is important in my SportOverFifty journey? I will explain it with a road race which I´m doing nearly every year. It´s a city race with many turns, narrow little streets, some cobble stone pavement sections and four rounds with 2,035 m (~1,26 miles). So it is in total 8,14 km (~5,05 miles). I really like this race. There are plenty of spectator along the course and the atmosphere is great.

In the table below you can find my results from the last 10 years.

YearTotal timeTime / kmTime / mile

As you can see I “lost” 3 min over the 10 years doing this race. 3 min doesn’t sound much, but with a time around 34 min instead of 37 min I would be under the top 10 in the 50 age group. The first place in this group had a time of 29:50 min which is fast for a race like this. The overall best needed 27:10 min, he started in the 30 age group. Maybe you noted that I did 32:06 min in 2012. There was a deviation in this particular year, because of a some road work and the course was slightly shorter. Unfortunately the official race distance wasn’t changed. So it looks like that this was my fastest race, but it wasn’t.

This year I was so confident that I will be at least a little bit faster than last year, especially with the really good preparation from the TrainAsOne plan. I managed to do the same time (37 min) as last year. I could try to blame external circumstance for my “bad” performance. For example the start was 15 min delayed, because of a firefighter operation on the race course, but nobody new it at the official race start time. Everyone was already at the start line and all the warm up was for nothing. Or I could blame myself for not tying up my laces correctly, because after one round I had to stop to tie my shoe. Probably I could find some other reasons why I was not as fast as I wanted to be, but I stopped this intellectual pastime immediately.

And here comes now the acceptance into the game. I simply have to accept the fact that I was on this particular day only that fast. No ifs, buts or whens. No excuses and no worries. Just acceptance and gratitude that I was able to start. This is important for me. Acceptance gives me the opportunity to relax my mind, enjoy the training, stop worrying if I would ever be able to run faster than I did and it helps me to focus on my next big goal.