The running world is abuzz this morning with talk about Nike’s groundbreaking ‘Breaking 2’ project and Eliud Kipchoge’s amazing 2:00:25 marathon run. Over the past few months, I’ve seen an amazing swell of support for this project as well as a fair share of criticism.
Now, I’m not an elite. Nor will I ever be. But I am a runner, and I do have an opinion about Breaking 2 and it’s effect on my running world.
Some of the criticism lobbed at Nike was that any effort by Kipchoge, Zersenay Tadese, and Lelisa Desisa to break two hours for the marathon wouldn’t really “count” because so many efforts were made to cater to this particular attempt. Even if one of the runner’s broke the current world record – which Kipchoge did – people seemed quick to shout that this wasn’t going to be a “real” world record.
I get it, I really do. But Nike readily admitted that this was not an attempt to break a world record. This was about setting a goal. An outlandish shot in the dark goal. A moonshot, as Runner’s World has called it. And then seeing if you can make it happen.
As a runner, I know in my heart that it is moonshot’s like Breaking 2 that smash the barriers we once thought held us back. This is what I’m taking away from Nike’s Breaking 2 attempt and Kipchoge daring run.
Sometime during the run, elite runner and commentator Shalane Flanagan noted that we all needed to set our own Breaking 2 goals moving forward. And she is so right.
I will never ever break two in a marathon. But I might be able to do it in a half-marathon. An even bigger moonshot? Breaking 4 in the marathon and getting myself into a position where a BQ attempt is possible.
I have been cradling that dream in my palms for long enough. It’s time to see what I can do. To take my shot in the dark. My moonshot. Time for me to smash down the walls that have been holding me back.
What’s your Breaking 2 goal?