after the hardest parts

A young pilgrim met the author and told him, after walking the hardest  parts pilgrimage of the Eighty-Eight Temples of Shikoku, what he thought  about the rest of the walk “was going to be easy and I didn’t think I’d get any more out of walking.”ImageImage

The author answered, “Right, but that’s precisely when it gets hardest! Right when you feel  like it’s no longer hard, because the hard parts kept it from being truly hard, you know? That’s what so much of this was about for me, at least in the end: continuing to walk when both the discomfort and the novelty have passed. Like, I don’t know, a long term relationship.”

Coaches know about this insight. And others? 

Quotations are from: A Sense of Direction by Gideon Lewis-Kraus

photos: from a friend’s yard