Tuesday, June 4, 2013

How To Run a Good Race

Let us run with endurance the race that is set before us. - Hebrews 12:1
5:30  am - The alarm goes off.  I roll over like Beethoven and decide that I am not going for a run this Saturday morning.  It's been a stressful week - I need the sleep.  I doze back into a far away dream about who knows what.  It must have been pleasant, because I couldn't wait to get back.

5:45 am - The alarm chirps shrill again.  I cover my head as murderous thoughts cross my mind.  I'm thinking a hammer and lighter fluid.  I'm gonna clock that clock over the head - it won't know what time it is.  Okay, sorry.  Not awake enough to be funny. Or pun-ee.  Whatever...

Hubby starts to stir.
"You running today?" 
I play dead.  He shakes my lifeless body.
"Honey, it's getting late." 
I feel him kick off the covers as he sits at the edge of the bed.  Silence.  Blessed silence.

... Never mind.  He gets up and shuffles to the bathroom.  I hear the lid go up, the faucet turns on and the toilet flushes.  The other faucet turns on, and he's washing his hands.  Shuffle, shuffle, shuffle.  He shakes me again. 
"Come on, it's gonna get too hot." 

"Fiiine."  Sigh. I throw off the covers and do my own shuffle, shuffle, shuffle to the bathroom.  It's so hard to get moving.  The sun is out.  My head hurts.  Probably dehydrated.   I so don't want to do this, but I really should.  I won't regret it.  All this goes through my head before I reach the toilet.

6:30 am - We park the car behind the Yamaha building and stretch our dull muscles.  It's been two weeks since we last ran.  It's warm, but not hot yet.  We decide to slightly change our route.  It's the same distance, but goes off the main road and in between the golf course and a housing area.  A little more hilly.  Clearly it's still too early and our judgment is cloudy. 

We decide on a slow pace.  Or rather, Scotty decides to stick with me.  It's actually pleasant -  running side by side, Ed Sheeran playing on my ipod.  We look like that athletic couple who bonds over early workouts on Saturday mornings.  Crazy people.  We are that couple.  We're awesome.  Kinda like this:

We get to the final mile that will take us back to the car.  Uphill.  It's hot.  I'm tired.  Really tired.  Not feeling so awesome now.   I remind myself that I've run more difficult courses. 

My legs hurt.  Just put one foot in front of the other, I tell myself.

My lungs are burning.  Deep breaths.  Ignore the side cramp.  I've slowed to a walk-run.  My shoulders are slumped.  I know if I stop now I won't start back up.  
"Almost there."  Scotty says. 
I'm pretty sure there are horns growing out of his head.

I just want to walk the rest of the way. Don't quit.  Just. Fall.  Forward.

We finally round a corner and I see the Circle K that is across from where we are parked.  I'm thinking about the cold water bottle that's waiting for me.  And rest.  I lift my head, square my shoulders and increase my pace.  I am almost finished. 


Rough morning.  Grumpy kids.  Grumpy momma.  I'm pouting over certain situations and wishing things were different.
 "Is this always going to be a struggle?" "   
 "Put one foot in front of the other." 
 "Lord, I'm just so tired." 
 "Deep breaths.  Don't quit."
 "How long will I have to do this?' 
 "You've made it through more difficult situations than this.   Just.  Fall.  Forward."
Sometimes it seems we are running up hill with tired legs and burning lungs.  But at the top of the hill is rest.  And refreshment.  So, I'm lifting my head, squaring my shoulders and turning up the music.  I'm going to finish strong.


But you, LORD, are a shield around me, my glory, the One who lifts my head high.          - Psalm 3:3
 I will lift up my eyes unto the hills, from which comes my help. - Psalm 121:11


  1. What you wrote here really is a blessing to me!

  2. Really? That makes me smile :) Thanks for saying so, Ashley!


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