I have about 7 weeks until the Rock-n-Roll Virginia Beach Half Marathon. I missed my long run the week before because I left my knee brace, water belt and ipod in Kingston, so I had to wait for Mom to mail it all back to me. Fail. And, p.s., whoever said you only need to grab tennis shoes and head out when you run has never been on a run with me. I’m loaded down, baby! I thought about running without it so I would make sure and get the miles in, but finally convinced myself that injuring my knee wasn’t worth it.
This Saturday’s long run was supposed to be 6 miles because it was a “rest week,” but since I missed last week’s run, I decided to do 8 miles instead. As soon as my alarm went off, I knew it was going to be one of those runs where I just. didn’t. want. to. do. it. I was tired, but there’s no sleeping in if I want to run before it’s 110 degrees. I made that mistake at the beginning of the summer and almost had a heat stroke. Now I get my buns out of bed. I also knew the run was going to be a little more challenging than normal since I had missed last week’s run.
Nick normally rides his bike with me, but he was at church helping to mow the yard, so it was just me and my crappy attitude. I was seriously about a half mile in and considered turning around, but knew I would just have to do it the next day, so I continued on. I picked a new trail for Saturday’s run and next thing I knew, I was facing a ginarmous hill and not happy about it. I was huffing and puffing my way up the hill and as I’m cursing life in my head, here comes an older man in a wheelchair who was working even harder than I was to make it up the hill.
I seriously felt like God was giving me a not so gentle reminder that things could be so much worse and at least I have the ability to run up the hill. I’m not going to lie. The entire 8 miles felt like 20-it just wasn’t a good day. But every time I felt like I wanted to quit, I kept thinking, “your legs work. Use them.”
I’m not the fastest runner. Sometimes I think I may actually quit breathing on a run. Maybe my time will be terrible at the half. But here’s to just being able to run and doing it.
* I can do everything through Christ who strengthens me. Philippians 4:13