If you don’t enjoy running, training for a half marathon is a real drag. I would know. I signed myself up for a 13.1 mile run through the Denver Metro area. The thing is, I really HATE running. Like, a lot. The day-to-day practice is pretty miserable. There’s no one cheering for you along the way while it’s raining. No one is handing you water and telling you to hang in there. It’s just you, your headphones, and zero accountability for turning back. Sometimes, when I’m driving, I see people who look like they’re really digging the training. They look happy, thin, healthy, happy… happy… not sick and barfing… I envy those folks.

So why keep training? Why bother? For me, it comes down to a feeling of accomplishment. When I have to work hard to do something, I find more value in it, and I’m THAT much more proud of myself for completing the task. Some days I feel defeated. Some runs go better than others, but I keep at it, or I won’t improve.

Fitness is a journey, right? You don’t just wake up one day, 20lbs lighter and able to bench press 220, right? Our voice is the same way. It is important to remember, that it still takes dilligence and perseverance to accomplish your vocal goals. You will not just wake up one day and be 90s Mariah Carey. Especially if you don’t put in your hours. It’s true, some people are blessed with excellent “vocal metabolisms.” Meaning, some people just start at a little more of an advantage than others, but that doesn’t mean that hard work won’t take you to their level and past it. You just have to roll up your sleeves and get to work! But there is one big difference between running and singing, if you’re like me anyway. Singing is actually FUN work! Practicing can be a time of joy and discovery, instead of a dreaded experience.

The most important thing to have in your vocal tool belt is patience. Patience with yourself. Take the time to notice your accomplishments. Take the time to congratulate yourself for them. And be gentle with yourself. This is a beautiful journey that you’ve chosen to embark on. Revel in it.