Does Endurance set us apart ?
I am passionate about physical fitness and how it works on the human body. But my bigger fascination is with mental toughness. I hear ridiculous stories of human endurance and wonder what is it that makes such people endure beyond perceived human comprehension. What is it that sets some of us way above the rest ?
Being a marathon runner, my favorite tale of human endurance is a documentary called Running the Sahara. Faced with an epic challenge, three runners put their lives on the line to make a difference. They crossed the Sahara to tell the world, the story of Africa’s water crisis .
Charlie Engle ( U.S.A), Kevin Lin ( Taiwan) and Ray Zahab ( Canada) ran a distance of 6920 kilometers in 111 days spanning 6 countries of Africa in temperatures of 140 degrees fahrenheit to below freezing. How is this humanly possible ?
Lets look at body conditioning through physical fitness first and then understand the aspect of mental toughness. Our bodies will adapt to the stress of exercise with increased fitness, if the stress is above threshold intensity. If a muscle is stressed it adapts and improves its function. Physical fitness is largely reflective of the level and intensity of training that you put it through. The human body is truly an amazing, adaptable machine. We are only limited by those limits that our minds set. We are so much stronger than we think
So how do we overcome these limits? “If I had to select one quality, one personal characteristic that I regard as being most highly correlated with success, whatever the human feat, i would pick the trait of persistence and determination. The will to endure to the end, to get knocked down seventy times and get up off the floor saying. “Here comes number seventy-one!” ~ Richard M. Devos
There are many unsuccessful people with talent, many unrewarded genius and the world is full of educated idiots. But persistence and determination is what makes us tough and sets us apart