Thursday, March 12, 2009

Running Against The Wind

Originally Published 11.4.2008

About six months ago, I pulled my Achilles tendon. It’s been extremely hard to come back. After every run, it felt like someone was grabbing the back of my ankle with a red hot pincer.

Recently, I’ve recovered enough to be able to exercise using an elliptical trainer. It’s helping me lose some of the weight I gained on injured reserve, but it’s not as enjoyable as running. It’s not outdoors.

I like running down the jogging paths in my community. It takes me through neighborhoods, along creeks, by soccer, football, and softball fields, past ponds, through wooded areas, and across parks. There’s always something different to see. This is my favorite time of the year to run because the trees are changing colors and the temperatures are dropping.

Some people don’t like running outdoors. They don’t like running in inclement or extreme weather. Not me. While I prefer running when it’s 40 degrees, I can tolerate everything from triple digits to freezing weather. Rain doesn’t bother me and I love running in the occasional snow storm.

The only weather I don’t like is wind. Unfortunately, we get more than our share of wind in Dallas. It may not be steady enough for me to feel comfortable depending on Boone Pickens’ wind power as a source of electricity, but it’s frequent enough to make running difficult from time to time.

Running into the wind seems brutal to me. Intellectually, I know I weigh too much for the wind to really affect me, but that’s how it seems. I struggle against a headwind. Conversely, I feel a small lift when the wind is at my back.

While running with a tailwind feels easier than running into the wind, when I time a run the wind doesn’t make much difference. In fact, the difference is so slight that with a little concerted effort, I can run just as fast into the wind as I can with the wind.

That means, the most important variable is not the wind, but my effort. With greater effort I can overcome a headwind.

It’s the same with government headwinds. No matter who wins today’s elections, no matter the composition of congress, there’s only one certainty. Silly and stupid laws will get passed.

Of course, some laws will blow worse than others. Some will make business success seem like you’re fighting a headwind while also running uphill.

So what? Even with a government headwind, you can still succeed, though it might require a little more effort on your part.

I honestly believe the North American introduction of the Sprinter van will have a greater impact on the service businesses who buy these vehicles than the outcome of today’s election.

Government is not an excuse for business failure unless you allow it. With a greater exertion you can overcome any government headwind.

© 2008 Matt Michel

No comments:

Post a Comment