The following is taken from the author’s foreword of Middle Distance Running by Percy Cerutty published in 1964.
It is not important that we merely compete: that it is important that we endeavour to excel. That means, we do with all our ‘heart and soul’ that which we find at hand to do.
That we leave ‘no stone unturn’d’: no page unread: nothing frustrates us – since with the difficulty is the means of overcoming – and this once we have resolved upon a course of action.
There are much more priceless things than winning especially, if the victories be ‘unearned’ or ‘cheap’.
It is the ‘training’: the ‘way’, that is valuable. That winning is only evidence of something and may be valuable, or not.
That ‘value’ is only ‘earned’ when there has been self-discipline: exhaustive effort and the development of intelligence through experience and thought.
That without these factors preceding ‘winning’ – winning itself, rather than be an advantageous experience, can stultify the personality – not add to it.
I hold:Percy Cerutty
That suffering and dedication is the only way to understanding, compassion and courage.
That these three add up to a lovable personality, true withal, and the most priceless of all – character.