Your Online Business will be a success when you know how to train for a marathon
This article will not convince you to be a marathon runner. However, having knowledge about how to run 42.2K (26.2 miles) without falling apart, will be useful when creating your online business.
In a recent post, the word leverage was the glue between marathon training and entrepreneurship. In another article, we compare the similarities between the marathon and run your online business.
Searching around on the Internet you’ll find thousands of different articles about the same topic. All analyses are valid, and the truth is that the list can be almost endless if you would like to compare the similarities.
After reading a lot of what you can find on the web and also compare with my own experience, this article will boil it down to what I call the “Magic Formula” for running your online business like a marathon training. It’s all from mindset to practical work, and by using the formula, you will substantially increase your probability for success.
As all formulas, and to more easily remember it, it has its own name: B L A C K J A C K
Run Your Online Business and Marathon Training with Blackjack
It’s true what Larry Alton writes in his article, business isn’t for sprinters. All that he mentions is correct, but let’s streamline the Blackjack-formula and get it all written down into practical guidance for success.
Before 2009 I had never run a marathon race. Several 10k and even some half marathons, but never a full marathon. Now after 9 years, I’m ready for my marathon race number 21 within a couple of weeks.
Why should you care about me and what I’m doing? Well, you shouldn’t, but with this introduction, I would like to share with you what made me take a decision. Not a random New Year Resolution between joy and champagne, but a bulletproof decision.
When watching a race in December 2008 together with my youngest son, he suddenly asked me:
“Dad, are you in to run this race next year?”
First, you feel honored to be challenged by your son, 33 years younger than me, to run a marathon race. Then you get scared, or at least “shaky.” It took me a week or two to give my answer, after investigating what it takes regarding time, and personal effort.
When the decision came, it was a bulletproof decision. It was a decision where all aspects of the challenge had gone through an incredibly detailed analysis.
When starting my online business 4 years later, the decision was the same bulletproof decision, I now had learned from the decision to run my first marathon.
It’s nothing wrong to not enter, but it is a failure to do it without a serious and well thought through decision.
Based on bulletproof decisions, today I’m a passionate marathon runner and online marketer.
To run your online business as well as a marathon race, it’s all about taking the right decision.
Lock in your Commitment
With a correct decision, it’s much easier to take the next step: to Lock in your commitment. You need to be committed to a lot of things; your available time, with your family, and with your job.
Be honest with yourself and avoid creating false expectations. To train for a marathon race, as well running your online business, takes time….a lot of time.
Your commitment should turn into something you feel is fun to do. Imagine being committed to something you don’t like. Life is too short to commit to something you don’t feel passionate about.
Once the commitment is there, write it down, like a sort of pledge. When you need to motivate yourself, it’s a good idea to read your pledge, pump up yourself and just do it!
Adapt your Goal Setting
Now we are into the more practical stuff, what later will convert into a plan. When setting a goal, you always need to do it from the end and backward.
When setting my goal for my first marathon, I dived into a training program with different finishing times and then figured out what kind of training was necessary to achieve the goal.
My first marathon goal was to run the 42.2k (26.2 miles) on 4 hours and 20 minutes. I did it on 4 hours 19 minutes and 36 seconds, thanks to a realistic goal setting.
For your online business, the same pattern is valid. Starting out part-time and to quit my corporate job within 2 years was my goal. Almost on time, I could fulfill the goal sat.
Professional goal setting isn’t to throughout a figure randomly and see if you can make it. It’s a detailed work based on all the variables you play with. As you can understand, the bulletproof decision and serious commitment are fundamental for a realistic goal setting.
Check your Planning
The good thing with a serious goal is that the planning to reach it will be much easier. Start with the goal and work backward. The training program I used and still am using, make it easy to specify all the training sessions based on your goal.
When qualifying for the Boston Marathon back in 2012, the qualification time to be invited to apply for a starting position was 3:54:00 in my age category. The training plan was created accordingly. I did the race on 3:49:47 and got my bib number for the Boston Marathon 2013.
Your online business works the same way. Your goal decides what kind of planning you need to do. To make it easier to reach your goal, find a business coach, or as I did join a system that gives you all the tools you need.
Keep on with Hard work
When training for a marathon or creating your online business, you will face a lot of ups and downs. That’s the way life works. Further, there will be some pieces of training you like more than others.
In my case, my preference training is interval training with a lot of speed involved, followed by the weekly long runs. My nightmare is hill training. However, all these different disciplines are necessary, and you just have to do them. You can always mix them around during the week, but they all have to be done. We all have different methods to optimize the motivation to get the different parts of the training executed, and the only non-existing alternative is to skip the training.
The same happens with your online business. Personally, I don’t like very much to keep track of my traffic to my websites. You know it’s essential for your business, and you just have to do it.
Coming back to the passion you have for your online business or your marathon training, can you imagine if you don’t feel passionate about it? How should you mobilize to do the “boring” stuff, if the passion isn’t there?
To keep on with hard work, you must have a burning interest in what you’re doing. Otherwise, you will be an “expert” in finding reasons to not do it.
Jump for Joy on the Race Day
I will never forget the first marathon race. You have prepared yourself for a year, and now the race day is there. You prepare everything as you were going to make a flight to the moon. Nothing will be missing.
The start shot, and here we go. What an emotion! Absorbing all advice from runners with more experience, you focus on one single thing: keep the pace!
The “wall” is coming at kilometer 28 (mile 17.5). You know what to expect, but this is worse. All the hard work and disciplined training give you the courage to not through in the towel. To have fun on the race day is your pre-award for all the hard work you have done to be where you are.
After training and building my sites, the first ad campaign on Facebook was a similar thrilling event. The leads start to come in, the first sale and here we go. Time to “hit the wall!” Your Facebook account is suspended for violating the rules of Facebook.
Your training and obtained experience tell you what to do next. A few days of interruption and the leads from Facebook start to come in again. The practice, hard work and confidence in what you’re doing, always give you tools to use to make the necessary corrections. To give up is the only non-existing option.
The joy to run your online business as a passionate entrepreneur, together with your other passion for running and training for marathons, allows you to live a lifestyle that you earlier thought was earmarked for the so-called gurus.
Acknowledge your Reward
The first time I crossed the finish line and got the medal for 42.2 kilometers, was a moment of reflection. To enjoy the reward is an essential part of the journey.
In the same way, I can still remember my first lead and my first sale. It is a confirmation of that the business you’re creating actually works.
Always assign sufficient time to reward yourself. It doesn’t have to be big things. Even small daily achievements should be subject to a reward. You deserve it!
Care for Rest
Sounds weird but to rest from training and the work you love, could be one of the most challenging things to do.
Fortunately, I’m using a very professional training program for my running, where one or two days are assigned to rest. After a while, you learn that your body needs to recover from hard training to be able to grow your muscle optimization. Sometimes you hear about people having a low performance due to overtraining.
The same goes for your business. Even if you love what you do, you need to get a distance to your work. Dedicate time to your family, rest from your work, and do something else. You will notice that your level of performance will raise when starting up again.
If you’re running your online business, as I do, you have the advantage to be very flexible. You can combine your work traveling. You just need to bring your laptop and connect to the Internet, and you’re in business no matter where in the world you decide to be. It’s priceless to be able to travel the world together with my wife without losing the grip of my business. As a passionate marathon runner, the combination with your online business, allows you to live a lifestyle that was impossible just a few decades ago.
The 20 marathon races made so far have been in 5 different countries, and 5 of the 6 majors are already done. With Boston, New York, Chicago, London, and Berlin, it’s only Tokyo Marathon left to tick off.
Without having your online business, this journey wouldn’t be possible to make.
Keep up and Repeat
Everything change over time. A decision and commitment you do today will not be 100% valid one year later. Therefore, it’s important to not see your decision and commitment as something static.
As the classic saying goes:
Rinse and repeat.
Circumstances of any sort can change the way to modify your decision and commitment. The worst thing you can do is to continue the same path if you feel that you have difficulties in committing yourself to the mission.
If you would like to build your online business the way I do, click the banner below. If you would like to get help with your training program for running a marathon, drop me a line in the contact form on this page, and it will be a pleasure to assist you.
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Jan O. Nilsson – The Magic Formula for Running Your Online Business Like a Marathon Training
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