Step 1 to Qualifying for Boston: Write it Down and Tell People

You are 42% more likely to achieve your goals just by writing them down.

First off, I have to give a huge shout out to Matt Frazier & Jason Fitzgerald who started RunYourBQ.com. I came across this website before I made the pledge to qualify for the Boston Marathon. I would be lying if I said it wasn’t the catalyst to setting this goal. Matt’s story of how he became a BQ runner after beginning his marathon career with a 4:53 finish resonated with me. I found myself thinking, if he can do it, so can I. I signed up for their email program and have since received a number of newsletter-style emails crammed with practical advice, attainable ways to improve and nuggets of inspiration. One of the earlier posts was especially useful. Matt and Jason suggested writing down the goal of qualifying for Boston using the following template:

  1. Your goal (written in an “I” statement): I will qualify for the Boston Marathon.
  2. Your why: 
    1. I have the physical potential and the training resources to qualify so why not?
    2. The Boston Marathon has always been my dream marathon and I’d be selling myself short to get in via a charity team as opposed to qualifying if I truly have the potential.
    3. I consider myself average at most things and obtaining a BQ would make me above average at something that I’m very passionate about.
  3. How much time you have allotted to reach your goal: I will qualify for the Boston Marathon in no more than 4 marathons from now (by the age of 30).

This is now your running bible to refer back to when training gets tough or when you you feel like skipping that early morning work out. Don’t skip! Say your goal out loud. Recall your reasons, and remember the time frame!

After you have this in writing, start telling everyone! As humans, we are motivated by social pressure. So let the social pressure of not wanting to publicly fail motivate you to run that extra mile when you’re feeling like calling it early.

Now that you’ve pledged to yourself and to your peers that you will qualify for the Boston Marathon, you’re ready to begin your journey!

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