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Marathons and Investing

As we begin the final leg of 2019, the following piece recounts some lessons I learned from training (and running) in 3 marathons. We think you will find that they are equally as applicable to investors as they are runners.

What do Marathons and Investing have in common?

On October 13, 2019, I finished my third marathon, the Lake Tahoe Marathon. As you would imagine, the scenery was spectacular as we traversed 26.2 miles along the West and South of beautiful Lake Tahoe. The first picture is from Mile 13 about 1,000 feet above Emerald Bay (a Sheriff took the photo!).

The second photo is at the finish line, exhausted yet pleased to be finished. Every other marathon I have finished, just as this one, I have said that will be my last. We will see.

So what are the common links between the two events?

1.           Both are emotional endeavors. Both require winning the inner emotional battle. Temptations to throw in the towel at just the wrong time. As an investor and an advisor to investors, I have witnessed many times an emotional response to just throw in the towel, and give in and “cut my losses”. At multiple times during a marathon and the training, the emotion to “throw in the towel” is almost unbearable. Sir Winston Churchill once said to the British people during the great challenges faced in WWII, “If you going through Hell, keep going!” At times, investing for the long term and running a marathon feel just like Sir Winston said. Keep going!!

2.           Both require patience and a long term view. When you start a marathon, you feel great. You have been through 4 months plus of training. Many training runs of 10 to 20 miles, so when you get started the day of the marathon, you feel great. The first few miles are like a walk in the park. Investing is like this, the day you invest your dollars, you feel great. Hopeful about the years ahead and optimistic. After all, you would not invest for the long term if you did not have an optimistic world view. But marathons like investing, will face ups and downs that require patience. You must focus on the long term goal. I have discovered in every marathon, there are moments you just have to focus on the finish line and the pain currently being experienced will end. Investing is the same, the emotional pain of downturns for all of history has ended and the optimism has returned. Patience and endurance are the key to success for both events.

3.           A good coach helps the journey. Even though I had run 2 previous marathons, I hired a coach to help me train for this marathon.  I need help on stretching and nutrition. This particular marathon marked my 50th birthday and my body was responding much different than earlier ages to the training. We view team in the role as financial and life coach for our clients. Helping to guide your emotions when they are out of line and giving advice on complex financial topics. Our team has committed to advanced designations, education and ongoing learning to foster the most up to date knowledge to be the best “coaches” possible for your families. 

Our team is truly thankful to advise and guide each of you and your families towards your long term financial and life’s goals.  
**No strategy assures success or protects against loss. Investing involves risk including loss of principal**
Keith Albritton 

Keith Albritton

Keith earned a B.S. in Finance from the University of Florida in 1991, and was a four-year letterman on the UF golf team that won two SEC championships and more than 12 team titles.

He joined Allen & Company in 1996 as a Financial Advisor. Keith is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ and Certified Investment Management Analyst®.
He holds both the Series 7 and 24 registrations with LPL Financial, and Series 66 with both LPL Financial and Allen & Company. Keith also holds the Life, Health and Variable Annuities insurance licenses.