The penultimate step is the second to last step prior to takeoff, particularly in the long jump event. It sets the jumper up for the correct trajectory and is critical in launching the athlete into the jump with purpose and conviction. As in sports, without having the preparation and focus in the penultimate step, a person cannot channel forward movement into a successful launch in life. Raised in rural Montana, Vanessa Bucklin graduated from UNLV and began her business career in Las Vegas. She married her college sweetheart, moved back to Montana to start a family, and was a bank vice president by the time she was twenty-five. She was successful, but she wasn't fulfilled. Despite numerous obstacles, she decided to open an insurance agency from scratch. Her thriving business has become a cornerstone of her small community, generating jobs, creating partnerships and alliances, serving neighbors, and giving back. In addition to her professional path, she shares stories about her youth, her core values, her mentors, and her family. Some with great humor, others heartbreaking. She pays tribute to her parents, who gave her a solid foundation, and to her brother, who died way too young. She talks about how she took up running as a way to heal following a tragedy (a competitive runner, she has completed eleven marathons and three ultramarathons). She honors those who have inspired and supported her. Bucklin believes that your opportunities shape and unfold by how you perceive them, and the only limits you have are those you impose on yourself. In both running and business, she had to learn to get comfortable with being uncomfortable. She followed the simple but fundamental rule that you have to crawl before you walk, and walk before you run. And as the primary breadwinner in her family, she was determined not to fail. Like many working mothers, Bucklin has had to contend with the guilt over having to put her newborn in day care to return to work, and has had to figure out how to balance career, family, and training for marathons—as well as running the farm that has been in her family for four generations. She also shares a few proud mom stories about each of her three children, who clearly have been paying attention to the life lessons she is teaching. Bucklin discusses the many penultimate steps in her life—seizing opportunities, searching and driving for answers, and reacting and responding positively to the circumstances. She recognizes that as in running, there are good miles and bad miles in life, but they all come together to define her as a person. She realizes and appreciates all the components of her experiences just as she enjoys the various trails, twists, and turns in her runs. Most importantly, she finds that the greatest treasures are not found just at the finish line but rather all along the way. She shares the many lessons she learned as she sought her truth: I am a simple girl raised as a farmer's daughter in rural Montana. I am not rich, famous, or extraordinary in any way, but I have worked hard, been brave and determined, and have had a positive perspective along the way. These same qualities are free and available to anyone who desires success. And if I can achieve success as a mother, runner, and business owner, I believe you can effectively penultimate step into your dreams as well.