Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Nick Saban, Politics, and Marathoners

There can be no rise in the value of labour without a fall of profits.--David Ricardo

Not too long ago I began to read about what is widely called, "The Process". The process is Nick Saban's method of consistency. It sounds simple enough but probably the skills lie in the ability to get people to buy in to whatever your philosophy is. Recently I've watched the Presidential Debates. The thing you hear over and over again is "grassroots". Every candidate has someone, or a group of people, "on the ground" in a particular area in order to get votes. In my opinion, any person that voluntarily opens there door to go for a run simply because, well, why not, is considered a runner. That said, marathoners are a bit of a different breed.

Okay, so what do all of these things have in common? First, I'll discuss Saban's Process. Nick Saban is a 5 time National Champion in college football. His philosophy is to focus solely on the job at hand. Focus on the activity that one currently engages. If someone is lifting weights, the most important rep is the next rep. Of course everybody has a goal to win a championship but the championship doesn't happen without deliberate effort and concentration on a particular drill that may happen 4 months before the first game. His process is to live literally, in the moment.

Every presidential candidate has to win different states in order to win the election. Historically, the amount of resources spent in a particular state will garner a viable candidate a greater percentage of the total vote. Candidates must lose sleep and go door to door in some instances to get that elusive vote from a citizen. They will spend their money and resources and give everything they have in order to win. After the primary, depending how well or how poorly they performed, said candidate will get on the phones and take meetings in order to raise money to land in the next super important state to do it all over again. They can't think about 6 months down the road because of they have a poor performance today, tomorrow may never happen.

Of course marathoners think about the end of a race. The glory of seeing your family or getting that medal placed around your neck is a great feeling. That glorious moment will never come if you don't put in months of work and Saturdays of 3 hour runs. While you run those miles, at least for me, I'm pretty focused on getting from mile to mile. I take account of my pace, effort, hydration, hunger, etc. I almost live mile to mile. I know that if I go out too hard that I may suffer later. Even in training every workout is very important. Every workout has a purpose. Sometimes that purpose is to get faster. Sometimes you just need to do some slow miles. Whatever it is, it is a day to day operation. The idea of signing up for a marathon and setting a program is the long term view but that view is in the distance when you are dragging your butt 18 miles in the summer.

The goal for me is to run 12 marathons in 12 months but I need to finish one at a time. For each marathon I need to first train for the first one and recover for the subsequent marathons. The motivation when things get tough is the completion of the goal set but the day to day, meister like work keeps everything in perspective.

No comments:

Post a Comment