At the weekend I met someone for the first time, a woman who really impressed me, and inspired me deeply.

She had experienced adversity and had decided that she was not going to let that define her life.

She accepted full accountability for her own future, her own destiny, she wanted to define her life the way she wanted, and to define how she would be remembered.

She wasn’t going to let fate decide for her.

She had set big bold goals for herself and then had gone out, and prepared herself, not only achieve those goals, but beat to them.

I had the pleasure on Sunday of watching her try and beat her marathon goal of 4hrs 35 minutes, she had already knocked 20 minutes off her best time 6 weeks earlier, which was an amazing achievement, but it wasn’t good enough she wanted more.

Her determination was so strong,  you could almost feel it, almost touch it, for me there was no doubt that she would achieve this goal or any other goal she set her mind to.

As we watched the race and her times came through, we couldn’t believe what we were hearing, she was ahead of pace on schedule for a 4hr 30 marathon. We thought ok, thats good, it gives her the opportunity to slow down a little in the later stages and still make the goal.

She didn’t do that, she maintained the pace almost to the end, just finishing with a time of 4hrs 31 minutes, a personal best by over 9 minutes.

Over the course of 2012 she had improved her time by over 1 minute a mile, which is outstanding.

I know that in her joy, there was a tinge of disappointment that she hadn’t broken 4hrs 30, but i know she will do that next time, no doubt.

The human spirit is very powerful when it aligns body, mind and soul on an objective.

When our aspiration and determination are working in synch then almost anything is possible.

Respect to my new friend, you are an inspiration.