Trophy for More Than Trying

I have a bin in my apartment containing a random assortment of item: old photos, newspaper articles, thank you notes, the polo from my campus tour guide organization, and apparently some trophies.

Today while looking for some things from the bin that I may use in a future presentation, I stumbled upon this trophy.


I didn’t realize I still had it, but apparently I do.

It is the trophy for being in the Union Middle School 100 Mile Club.

I know–you wish you could be this cool.

Still, I’m proud of what this trophy represents.

trophy-titleNo, I didn’t run 100 miles at one time. The longest distance I’ve ever run was 26.2 miles during the 2004 San Diego Rock N Roll Marathon, but even then, I walked a lot of it.

Instead, this trophy represents all of the half miles I ran all of the way. Over 200 times during my time in middle school.

This had nothing to do with time.
It had nothing to do with speed.
It was all about effort.

It wasn’t that we tried to run the whole way; we made a commitment, and we DID run the whole way.

Every student at my middle school could have earned this trophy, but there were only a handful of us. At times we were mocked by classmates who chose to walk the half miles–turning a 3-5 minute activity into a 10-12 minute one.

There were actually 3-4 months of my time where I was one of those students–not because of my attitude, but because of a horrible case of bronchitis I had back then that knocked me out of PE for over a month and then had me on a very slow recuperation.

And so maybe that is why I once put this trophy at the bottom of my special bin.

Because it represented a certain level of work ethic. Even though I had a horrible cold. Even though I had fewer attempts than my classmates, I still achieved this goal.

Just 100 miles over the course of 200 runs.
Each time deciding, I’m not going to stop for the next 3-5 minutes.
I will finish.

And that habit, day by day, week by week, month by month, lead to 100+ miles.

What will you start today?

What will be your 100 mile achievement?

Now just begin and don’t stop until you reach today’s finish line.

And then let me know about your “trophy” when you achieve it 🙂


Patrick Maurer is an award-winning motivational speaker and leadership coach with a proven track record of breaking through the everyday noise to transform campuses, communities, and individuals of all ages.