Setbacks and comebacks

I heard this phrase from Joel Osteen, “A setback is a setup for a comeback.”  I’m not sure who really originated it, but I like the play on words.  I also see it playing out in my life right now.  For those of you following me on my marathon training progress, I suffered a minor setback last week.  7 miles into my first 23-mile run, I started to feel the pain of a ligament strain in my right knee.

I tried to power through it, thinking (hoping) it might go away.  It just got worse.  It was one of those “when to stop” moments and I needed to listen to my body and my own advice.  To protect the knee from further damage, I ended up walking all the way home very slowly.  I could not bend my leg too much or put my full weight on it. 

I had a long time to think, “Maybe I shouldn’t have tried those new stretches. This is just great… 5 weeks before the marathon and I get my first injury.”  But on second thought, “You know… it could be a lot worse.  It could be 2 weeks before the marathon with no time to heal!”

Now it is one week later and I have not run at all.  I’m going to continue to take it easy as I get back into running form.  This messes up my plan to work up to 26 miles before the marathon.  I’ll be going into the real race knowing for sure that I can do 20 miles – but what’s going to happen in the last 6?

Once again, I should listen to my own advice.  When I started this journey I wrote a piece about Faith; about how it’s not easy, but sometimes it’s all you’ve got.  The catalyst for this fundraising marathon, my brother Jeff, is slowly recovering from chemo and day by day gaining back his strength.  He’ll find out in January if they eradicated all the Myeloma with the final harsh treatment.  He’s operating on faith now, and I’m going to draw strength in parallel from his tenacity. 

I will finish the marathon no matter what, because I want to symbolically show Jeff that I am beside him in his battle.  I may run across the finish line, or I may limp across, but I WILL cross it.  And I look forward to the day when both of us can look back… and celebrate our comebacks.

NOTE:  Thank you for sponsoring my run and advancing medical science to develop a cure. There is still time to give!  Here’s a brief update on what your money is doing.

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10 Comments on “Setbacks and comebacks”


  1. Great read Mr. Goad! Never give up, especially when the ones your love are counting on you!

  2. Kristie Says:

    Keep the faith coach! You can do it – one day, one step at a time.

  3. chris Lansdowne Says:

    In some ways David this setback in your knee will help you to relate to your brother in a deeper way… your path that you were heading down suddenly had huge detour sign on it. A sign that changed the way you were going. Your brother has had to face many signs with detours on his path, he’s has to face new directions in his life everyday. In some way this set back will show you more about yourself then you realize. True Faith is to hope for things which are not seen…you both will find the deeper meaning of what the means, Hugs, Chris

  4. kellye Says:

    you can do it (Isaiah 40:31)

    • davidgoad Says:

      Thanks Kellye 🙂
      31 but those who hope in the LORD
      will renew their strength.
      They will soar on wings like eagles;
      they will run and not grow weary,
      they will walk and not be faint.

  5. Faith Says:

    Yesterday at the NY Marathon I saw people who were blind, people with no legs, a man who’s shirt said lung cancer survivor, anything is possible. And that sums it up. You can do it and you will do it. Because you have faith.

  6. alicia Says:

    I’m thinking you might have an IT band issue. Have you gone to the doctor? You can get through the marathon with the help of a cortizone shot. Look it up on the web. IllioTibial band. Feels like your knee is broken!

    I speak from experience. I’ve had this before. Check it out. It’s an overuse problem.

    Alicia O’Neill
    MMRF Marathon Program

    • davidgoad Says:

      Alicia, I think that is exactly what I have. Just researched it. (I haven’t confirmed with a doctor yet.) I’m workin’ the foam roller and will continue to rest, ice and elevate.


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