Tuesday, November 21, 2017

I Did The Impossible

November 12, 2017 I became a half marathon finisher.

Looking back,  I believe G-d knew I would on March 27, 2015.

It was on this date that I posted the following picture on social media:

At the time my swagger wagon only had one car magnet....a 5k one. Someone placed this 13.1 magnet on my car while my family and I were inside a movie theater. When we walked out there was some confusion about this being my van.  At the end of the post with this picture I wrote: "Cracks me up that someone put this on my swagger wagon!! Maybe they are telling me I should do 13.1???"

Running wasn't even on my radar in 2015.  My last and third 5k was in 2013.  I had meniscus surgery on my right knee in 2012, my left knee in 2013, and other health issues in 2013.  I was trying to keep fighting on my journey despite feeling defeated, but running was not apart of that fight! In September of 2015 I had to have thyroid surgery, which led to an asthma diagnosis and months of getting that managed.

I was able to do other workouts, but run no way.  I was slow when I ran in 2013....with all the stuff that hindered me, I would be even slower, so I stuck to what I could do and enjoyed
and I did not run.

But G-d. 

He asked me to do the impossible.  I said yes.

 Obedience over feelings. 

Being obedient to this doing the impossible challenge helped me embrace my one word for the year, courage.   Courage does not mean no fear or no risk.    It's realizing the presence of danger, fear, or difficulty and still taking action.  I was unsure of my ability to follow through with this training due to asthma and my knees. 

But G-d. 

I was sure of Him.

Obedience over feelings.
All of the work led to half marathon day.  On one hand it was just another run, but on the other hand it was so much more.  I had so much support and encouragement and for that I am grateful.  I had many who allowed me to ask questions and gave me their tips....including tips for running in the rain.
 During training I always skipped days that it rained and made it up later.  On race day, I could not skip.  I don't know how long it rained at the start, a few miles maybe, it wasn't a down pour, but it wasn't a sprinkle either, and boy did it spike up the humidity! I was gasping for air by mile 9 and had to have help getting my inhaler.  The air also seemed to make me loose electrolytes faster. During training my knees never hurt, but on race day, I became worried that something was wrong and I would not be able to finish.  I just kept going.  I knew G-d called me to this, and He would see me through.  Throughout my training I used an app I love that helped me know my mileage and my pace,but while participating I used a different app, and it did not match the mileage signs on the route nor inform me of my distance between miles and I felt lost many times.  I often wondered where I was and how far I had to go.  I was asked by a gentleman checking on runners in a golf cart, if I was ok several times and asked once if I wanted a ride.  I must have been a sight! (The rain that began again at the end wasn't helping matters.)  I told him no, I would finish even if they shut down the finish line.  I finally made it to the last drink station, so approximately mile 12 and was blessed by two amazing ladies who asked if they could run in with me. (During this mile, I did ask a cop driving us in to arrest me, but the ladies would not let him.) I even had another volunteer run with me for a minute at a previous station, who joined us right before crossing the finish.  I was used to running and walking alone, it is how I trained, but having support to finish that last mile was a blessing.  Crossing the finish line made me smile from ear to ear and cry. 

Obedience over feelings.

Impossible became possible.  I conquered 13.1 miles.  I completed a half marathon. Really G-d did it.  He called me to it and met me in every step of every mile.  I am so humbled by that.  I am so grateful that I obeyed and experienced this journey with Him. He knew I could do it on November 12, 2017 and knew I would on March 27, 2015.  He also knew why He was calling me to it.  He knew I needed this journey at this time.  The work that He and I did for the last 6 months has equipped and empowered me. It has helped me grasp a deeper meaning of endurance and perseverance.  This challenge has been hard! I have wanted to quit....but I kept obeying, enduring, and persevering. I have grown stronger physically, emotionally, and spiritually.

Obedience over feelings. 

Half marathon finisher.


On Sunday I was given a gift for my running shoes:

Hebrews 12:1 says "Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witness to the life of faith, let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up.  And let us run with endurance the race G-d has set before us."

Whatever your race is, it may seem impossible, but G-d. 

Obedience over feelings.  

You can do it my friend.  And He will meet you in every step of every mile.


Saturday, November 4, 2017

Confession: I Do Not Love Running

I have been training since May for a half Marathon.  This Doing The Impossible Challenge came from my friends at  Rock This Revival and out of obedience to G-d asking, I accepted.

My brother asked me when I began this training,  if I enjoyed running, I told him I didn't.  I love kickboxing,  boot camp, crossfit (I miss it), and lifting weights.  I do not love running.

And now it's November, I still can't say I love running.  I can think of a million things I could do with the time it takes to train for a half-marathon.  It is hard on my body...oh my aching knees, feet, and hips!!

But, I deeply appreciate running and I am overwhelmed with gratitude for what it has done for me and in me over the last 6 months. 

When I was a kid one of my favorite activities was listening to my record player. I would listen for hours.  I would take in the words and feel the emotion.  I would sing, dance, and worship.  It was solitude with a sound track...and it was good for my soul.

Training to walk/run this half has given me a place of solitude with a sound track and it has been good for my soul.  I have listened to music and sermons.   I have wrestled through struggles with the Lord. I have prayed and worshiped.  Running has given me breath when I felt like life was taking my breath away. It has given me a space to clear my mind, challenge myself, and prove to myself that I can do all things through Christ.  It has taken my one word for the year, courage, to a new level.

Yesterday's long run was no exception.  My running schedule had me doing 10 miles yesterday.   I had thought about not running that distance, but I am glad I did.  I have not found myself worked up over distance before, but yesterday I was.  I was anxious.  Once I got started I got in a groove and allowed the music to speak and just kept putting one foot in front of the other. I was doing well with my 2 minute run/1 minute walk intervals till around mile 9,  I am not sure exactly what I did...I just did what I could and I prayed.  As I inched closer to 10, it became physically hard....everything hurt.  The screaming of my joints and muscles made each step feel impossible, but the voice in my head and in my spirit was screaming louder. It told me I can't.  It told me there was no way.  Tears began to fall and I found myself sobbing.  I kept fighting with myself and for myself.  I reminded myself that Jesus would not bring me this far to leave me and that I have come to far. Quitting was not an option, despite my desire to do so.  The folks driving down the road gave me some looks.  I got myself together and I reached 10 miles.  A few more tears were shed and it occurred to me to get home, I could get in one more mile.  Just one more.  I kept going.  I have no idea what the interval was, but I pushed through.  I glanced at my app and realized I could get 11 miles in under 3 hours if I pushed.  

I did it!  I leaned over and sobbed again.  This time out of joy, thankfulness, and praise.  I was a sight, I am sure.  A gentleman pulled over to check on me, asked if I was alright, I said yes sir, they are happy tears.  

This training parallels our lives and our walks with Christ.   We will face hard things.  We will need endurance, perseverance. We will need to fight for ourselves and even with ourselves.  When given the choice will we do all things through Christ and give just one more mile or will we quit?   

Doing the impossible. 


All things through Christ.