Determination to succeed — ambitious, that’s me!

Deb Runs


I’m tough, ambitious, and I know exactly what I want. If that makes me a bitch, okay. — Madonna

Today I’m linking up with Deb Runs and her Wednesday Word, which obviously is ambitious.

Maybe the Madonna quote above isn’t exactly me, but I tend to know what I want and then just wear people down until they give in.

I can give you a few of examples, too:

  • I wore my husband down about doing ZOOMA Annapolis – I had already done a half at the beginning of the month. I explained my reasons for wanting to do the race & then just sort of badgered him into it.
  • My husband and I met in college. We started dating my senior year. My parents really liked him (in fact, there are times I think they like him more than they like me — not really true, but sometimes it does feel that way, like how they always have Coke Zero for him). Anyway, we graduated, he moved to VT and I moved to MD. My parents thought after 6 months I should move on. We’ll be married 30 years in a couple of months.
  • Speaking of my parents, they really wanted me to go to Cornell, like my brother (and 2 of his 3 kids so far). And hopefully become a lawyer, like my father did and my brother eventually did as well. While I applied to Cornell to appease them, and got in, it wasn’t what I wanted to do. Besides, as mentioned above, I met my husband at the college of my choice. And they like him. They really like him.

The funny thing is if you meet me, I’m quiet. I’m shy. I’m not particularly assertive. Yet many people have been fooled by that — because yes, I can also be very tenacious and tough, too.

Then there’s the whole half marathon in every state thing. Clearly an ambitious undertaking for an older, slower runner. Sometimes it drives me to be a little overly ambitious in my running. Sometimes that comes back to bite me in the form of an illness or injury.

But it keeps me moving. Quit on a run? Just doesn’t happen. I don’t even shorten up my long runs if I’m not feeling it (although a shorter, easy run can be a different story). Not do a scheduled run? Unless I’m sick or injured or there’s a family crisis, it just happens, whether I’m feeling it or not. It might be juggled around, it might start way too late because I procrastinated, but it just gets done.

I am not at all ambitious when it comes to a career. I never was. Which probably explains why I ended up retiring in my 40s. I didn’t plan to, it just happened, although if the right opportunity came along who knows? It’s nice to have a bit more spending money. There are shoes to buy and races to enter, after all.

Those who are believed to be most abject and humble are usually most ambitious and envious — Baruch Spinoza

Isn’t the above a great quote? And boy does it describe me. Too many people have look at my small stature and baby face (before I got so gray!) and just assumed, wrongly, that they could walk all over me.

And yes, finally, I am ambitious when it comes to getting faster. I keep trying. I make small advances, but yes, I am so envious of all the average runners who think they are so slow — to me they are fast and in this one area, I am not overly ambitious — I just want to be average. Is that really too much to ask?

In what areas of your life are you ambitious? Where are you not ambitious?

19 thoughts on “Determination to succeed — ambitious, that’s me!

  1. That Spinoza quote is spot on. I have a soft spot for the “quiet ones”, I can be one at times and married one! I hate how some people dismiss the introverted types. I feel pretty ambitious in the fitness department, it’s been a part of my life for over 20 years. That has to count for something 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m less ambitious in my career–I’m where I wanted to land, and that is a good feeling. Not to say I don’t give my all when I’m at work. Part of me would love to retire…but for now, it’s a job. And I’m still ambitious on the road. I don’t know how much longer that will last, tho…I feel my goals starting to be less about speed and more about bucket lists.


    1. I still definitely have ambitions about speed; maybe because our definitions of speed are so different, maybe because so far I haven’t really come close to what I think I can do in a half.

      As long as you’re still enjoying the journey & excited to run – that’s what’s important!


  3. I would say you are quite ambitious to set a goal to run a half in every state. I find I am very ambitious in some areas of my life and not in others. I guess that’s normal.

    I met my husband in college, too! Another similarity!

    Thanks for linking up!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I don’t think you have to be assertive to be ambitious at all! Quiet determination is killer! I’m blonde (really it’s solid white and I darken it) so people assume I’m stupid and have no ambitions. Oh, my…quiet determination payback is H.E.L.L. I talked about being overly ambitious in my post. It’s OK though, we just adjust and keep going.


    1. Well I obviously can’t play the blonde card. 🙂 I couldn’t even imagine myself as a blonde. When I did color my hair, it was still brunette with a red twinge. I’m fair enough to pull off red hair!

      I can be overly ambitious sometimes . . . I just get carried away. I guess we can all be like that.


    1. I can definitely be laid back about some things – like house cleaning! I like it clean, but it rarely is and I just have other things I’d rather do.

      And then there are the animals. I really pour myself into them, I just can’t not do that.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Your 50 state goal is an ambitious one for sure! I can be quiet and laid back, but I definitely don’t let anyone walk all over me and I can be very driven when I have a goal I want to achieve.

    Liked by 1 person

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