Tenacity: Hang in There, Never Give Up!


Have you been told, “hang in there”, “never give up”, “stick to it”, or “keep on going”?  When you are struggling, people may say these well-meaning words of encouragement.  Most people will tell you that tenacity is a great quality to have, especially if you’re trying something new and challenging that takes a while to complete.

Odds are, the people you admire have shown real tenacity in achieving their goals. Anything really worth doing takes persistence, perseverance, and stubborn determination. Being an accomplished writer requires real gifts, no doubt, but even the most gifted writer won’t make it to the best seller list without the tenacity required to make the long, hard journey from struggling to write the first few sentences, paragraphs, pages, chapters and progressing to writing entire books.

Tenacity is the quality displayed by someone who just won’t quit — who keeps trying until they reach their goal. Tenacity is more important than the degree of talent you have. You can learn anything, accomplish anything, if you’re tenacious enough, if you’re willing to hang in there long enough, willing to do whatever it takes, for as long as it takes.

Are you? If not, let me tell you about a woman by the name of Ida Keeling, perhaps she will inspire you as she has me. Ida Keeling was having a difficult time dealing with major losses in her life. Her husband passed away some years ago and both of her sons died tragically. She felt the pain of losing her sons was just too much to bear. Her daughter, Cheryl was worried about her, the smile had left Ida’s face and the light inside of her seemed to have gone off.

Cheryl owned a fitness business and often ran in races. She decided to ask her mother to attend a cross-country race with her held in Brooklyn, New York, not as a spectator but to actually run 3.1 miles.  Reluctantly, Ida, finally agreed.  I need to tell you that at this time Ida was 67 years old running in her very first race. Does this sound impressive?  It gets better.

Ida is 103 years old, born May 15, 1915! Yes, and she now holds Masters records in 60 meter and 100 meter distances for women in the 95-99 and 100-plus age groups.   Ida set the fastest known time by a 99-year-old woman for the 100 -meter dash at 59.80.

On April 30, 2016, Ida became the first woman in history to complete a 100-meter run at the age of 100. Her time of 1:17.33, was the best ever recorded in the 100-meter dash for any female age 100 or older.

On July 17, 2018, Ida appeared on TV and received an honorary Excellence in Sports Performance Yearly Award. The ESPY honors the top athletes every year, and now 103-year-old Ida Keeling is one of them.

Tenacity is about a mindset and approach to maintaining the momentum needed to accomplish what you want in life and then the cycle continues, completing one race at a time and continuing to practice skill building on a continuous basis, like Ida.

“Stay Tapped In to the wonderful things life has to offer.”

Dr. Myra




8 thoughts on “Tenacity: Hang in There, Never Give Up!

  1. Great article. Wonderful example of tenacity in action. A must-read for anyone who desires to chart their own path to success. Well done!


  2. Just LOVED this article. I’m going to look up Ida and read all about her. What an inspiration. I feel fortunate that my mother at the age of 81 is still doing all sorts of exercising and dance. She keeps challenging herself in many areas of her life and that keeps her body fit and mind sharp. She told me once, “….honey, never stop moving” I think that is a great mantra to have in life, especially these days when we tend to sit all day on the computer or in a car!


  3. This is a fantastic and inspirational story for sure! It proves that it is NEVER too late to strive to be your very best or to excel at something you’ve never even tried before. Thank you for sharing the story of Ida Keeling with us!


  4. Thank you Dr. Myra for the reminder. This has been an encouragement for me. Too often we want to give up, but the story of Ida Keeling is a great inspiration. It’s never too late. I first heard of her a couple of weeks ago on a talk show. I was so impressed that I immediately purchase her book: “Can’t Nothing Bring Me Down: Chasing Myself in the Race against Time”. I just received it yesterday and can hardly wait to read it.


  5. Thank you so much on that Excellent article on Tenacity and the story of Ida Keeling. An inspiration to me….not to give up.


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