Beyond the Finish Line:

Running and Living with Purpose

The NC500 Guide to Life

Acceptance of Vulnerability

Day 3

Acceptance of Vulnerability

As much as I tried not to, I had some preconceived ideas as to how the NC500 challenge would be.

Ideas on how hard it would be, how i could use my experiences as a professional football of nearly 20 years to overcome the challenges, and how I could use my experiences now as the goal setting and life coach to break down each day into smaller micro goals to manage.

And in many ways, this worked incredibly well on some days, but on others, it was simply useless.

Life is a rollercoaster of highs and lows, and at times, it can be difficult to navigate the unpredictability that comes our way.

Some days, we might feel energetic, focused, and full of enthusiasm, allowing us to achieve amazing things. Conversely, there are days when we feel drained, distracted, or overwhelmed, making it challenging to meet our usual standards.

There are times when I feel the challenge will be enormous on a given day and the reality isn’t as challenging as expected, these are days to enjoy, because opposed to that are the days when you feel you’ll be alright and you struggle, both physically and mentally.

We all experience these in all aspects of our life.

We all strive to be our best selves, but what happens when our best efforts fall short? It is essential to understand that the concept of “our best” is not a fixed standard, and it can vary from one moment to another.

Machines are built to deliver constant peak performance, humans are not.

The great Novak Djokovic demonstrated that recently when he finally lost at Wimbledon whilst playing superbly throughout the tournament.

Embracing this truth and accepting our vulnerability can lead to powerful personal growth and self-compassion.

But how do we accept the vulnerability of our eve changing performance?

As I mentioned in yesterday’s blog post, day four I struggled with new load that was being placed on my body, the distance, pain from blisters and my left ankle, and the never-ending rain.

I had a plan to run a jog 17 miles over the Highlands before stopping for lunch, and then completing 21 miles from there to the end point by 6:00 PM, at 6:00 PM I was cold, wet, tired, and still had 12 miles to go, I was mentally and physically broken.

Within a mile from my lunch stop, I made the decision that I was just going to walk the rest of the day. Many times, I tried to lift myself into a run but gave up almost instantly.

I was frustrated with myself for allowing myself to get into this position, but 12 miles equates to about 4 hours, which is a long time to be pissed off with yourself.

I had two options, to be bloody miserable for that time or to work on self-acceptance and compassion.

Reminding myself that the previous three ultramarathons over last three days, the pain that slowed me down, and the torrential rain were all valid contributing factors as to my current position helped enormously.

Coming to terms with the decision that I was going to walk rather than run was also a huge relief, immediately stopping that inner dialogue of

“come on run, no walk, no run, no walk”

Understanding that some days my best will be good enough, and Some days it simply won’t, acceptance of that vulnerability is vital for everyone, but although this is seen as a weakness, there’s a lot of strength in being vulnerable.


It’s a fact that every day we get up and despite our best plans, we have no idea how that day will unfold.

Despite our best-laid plans and aspirations, life has a way of surprising us, sometimes with boundless joy, while at other times with unfathomable despair.

Embracing this uncertainty every day requires courage and resilience, learning to find peace in the present moment, even if that moment tests us.

If we do that then we can deal with anything that comes away, and that is the beauty of vulnerability.

Be the best version of you

Your journey to a brighter future starts here

Let’s do it!

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