After my last race, I wanted to run another half-marathon and started training almost right away. Since my last goal was simply to finish, this time I wanted to improve my time. So I stuck to my training schedule, didn't skimp on my hills or sprints, and put everything I had into these past few weeks getting ready. I had it in my head that I wanted to finish under 2 hours - 1:59 to be exact. Based on my training runs it was doable, but it wasn't going to be easy.
Fast forward to the weekend of my race. Since it was down in Vancouver I had planned on spending a few extra days before the race relaxing at home, taking care of errands and appointments, and physically preparing for my run. But God had other plans. He needed me elsewhere. I ended up scheduling 3 last minute Theology of the Body talks for Friday and Saturday. Add on top of that two sick kids, a husband out of town, and mama getting sick herself, I thought there was no way I was going to hit my race goal - I even had doubts at one point that I could run. Icing on the cake was poor little Max hitting a 104deg. temp on Saturday night Once that happened I thought for sure my plans were out the door.
But throughout it all, God was whispering, even sometimes yelling, into my soul saying, "Trust me!" "Put all your fears and all your trust in me and I won't let you down!"
Yet I was resistant. I didn't want to trust God's Will. What if it meant giving more? What if it meant dealing with being up all night or more diaper blowouts or another change in plans? It was when I realized that I had nothing to lose by trusting in God that I finally surrendered. I told God on Saturday night that whatever was to come, I knew He would be with me. More than that, he would see me through and grant me the desires of my heart if only I trusted. And if things still didn't end up working out how I wanted, I knew that God would have a bigger (and greater) reason for it.
Max ended up having a rough night's sleep and I spent the rest of the night tossing and turning. I still trusted. The course was windy and hilly. I still trusted. And when I was 10 minutes out from my goal time, I still trusted. I pushed harder and ran faster than I ever had. And God came through. He pushed me up the (last 3 miles full) of hills. He gave me speed as I rounded the last corner. And He granted me more than the desire of my heart. He shaved off an extra minute. =)
God has taught me a lot through running. In fact, running has been one of the most redemptive acts in my life. I used to hate it with a passion. I could do anything (hike, snowshoes, dance, spin...) but run. I think my body got scared when I ran because running is what I did when I had an eating disorder in high school. But this past fall I tried to take it up again. I set little goals and ran simply because I liked being outside, by myself, with just me, God, and my I-Pod.
Running became not about losing weight or competing but rather about getting out and mirroring my spiritual journey with Christ. Every time I run I think about how much it is like our walk with God. I am reminded that if I can run when I don't want to or push myself harder when I don't want to, I can do those same things in life, in prayer. Running has enabled me to pray more, love more, and (like this past weekend) trust more in God. Not only that, but it is humbling. I do it for me and to better myself, for I know there are lots and lots of faster people out there!
All in all, I give glory to God for showing me that, if I only trust, He will come through. Now the question remains, to do the Tacoma half-marathon or not?
loved your sign, baby girl! even if it was upside down... =)
Official Time: 1:58:11
Age Group Place: 1/9 (woot woot!)
Gender Place: 17/96 females
Total Place: 58/168 finishers