Daily Chatter

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Are you Talented or a Hard Worker?

Hard work beats talent,
when talent doesn't work as hard.

Talent.  What is talent?  And how do you know if you have it? 
Do you keep running if you don't have it?

I have never thought that I was a talented runner.  My running is rarely a thing of beauty.  The form that has worked for me is not a reflection of grace and ease.  You won't see my running poses emulated on the cover of running magazines.  Because of those things talented is not an adjective that I would included in describing my running ability.  But unlike perhaps some other sports, I don't think I have to have a talent for running to get from it what I want and become good at it along the way.

What I may lack in talent for running I make up for in hard work.  Although until recently I would never have used that adjective; hard, to describe my efforts either. 

I love that saying,
Hard work beats talent, when talent doesn't work as hard
It's a handy thing to have in mind when a run does get hard or a day has been long and a workout still awaits.  The saying is catchy and inspiring in it's wording, it reminds me of several things about my running and the might be true for you as well.

I'm rarely competing against other runners.  My races a typically about pushing myself to better the outcome of a certain race or distance.  I do go into a few races with AG places to "defend" and there is a part of me that would like to have my finish time still be "good enough" to hold the title I had previously won.  It's always fulfilling to see how I stand up against other runners but it's rarely about beating someone else.

I also don't usually think my daily running is hard.  With my streak there are days that have become hard and they cause me to think about where my running is going and hard is not a place running belongs for me.  Those days make me review what I want out of running vs what I am getting.  Hard is more about effort than difficulty.  Hard is more about dedication and consistency than strain and pain.

But the message that any runner can "win."  That any runner can put forth the effort and meet their goals regards of the competition is really what I hear when I say,

Hard work beats talent, when talent doesn't work as hard.

So what are you?
A talented runner?  Or a hard worker?


  1. Way to get me thinking at 8am, Shelly!

    I would have to say mostly hard work... there may be some talent. I tend to think there is SOME element of talent, but it's worthless without the hard work. Everyone may be talented but many will never know it!

  2. I say a little of both. I also try to read my self a better runner. I am motivated by reading blogs, articles, and books about running. I just got done reading a book called Running Shorts, by Joe Muldowney it was INSPIRING! SO are blogs like this because on a long training run I can flash back to reading this or something from the book and say, I am not alone with some of the setbacks I encounter and I can push thru!!

  3. Hmmm. I don't know that I'm either. I've always thought I do pretty well in most things I try but I'm definitely not "gifted" in any sport I've tried to this point. I also don't think I work as hard as a lot of other people I see out there. I often wonder if moderation is good or bad...I change my mind about every other month.

  4. I've thought about this one quite a bit over the years. I think I have some talent, but like you, I work my butt off and that's the biggest factor in success, if you ask me. But I will also say that the true elite of the elite are those that both have talent and are willing to work hard. That's the combo that can't be beat.

  5. Hard worker for sure...and maybe a little of God's ability in me that allows me to run..though I can't take credit for it as my own talent...
    Great post!

  6. Definitely a hard worker! But God has given me the talents of perseverence and endurance to see my dreams come true!

  7. I hate to say that in most sports I've done I was the talent not the hard worker. I was good enough to make varsity and play, so I didn't push too hard. I always worked hard during the season, but off season, yikes! Now that I am running, and it does not come easy, I am trying hard to switch over to the hard worker!

  8. I feel like I am the hard worker. Running definitely isn't easy for me. Though I was born with a stubbornness that makes me not want to give up ever.

  9. I like this post. Hard work gets you to more places in all aspects of your life and I'd like to think that's what I do. Sometimes I know I don't work hard enough but I always get back into it. But I don't think many people work as hard as you :)

  10. Hard worker - because it's not a talent for running that I have!

  11. This is exactly what I love about running, you don't have to be born with any special skill to be good at it! I most certainly have no natural talent, but with running, if you put the time in, you will see improvement. It's such a great sport. Excellent post!

  12. I love this post. I'm not genetically gifted like a Kenyan, but with hard work I can get faster. Although there is probably some slow Kenyan reading this who is crying about stereotypes. :)

  13. I'm a hard worker. Period. I have zero running talent. And I'll admit that I'm often jealous of those naturally talented. Brand new runners that add distance and speed effortlessly. But I'm still proud of my hard work.

  14. I love love love this quote. I have said often that I have a little bit of physical talent and a lot of determination, heart, and work ethic. Great post! :)