"Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, Who is in you, Whom you have received from God? ... So use every part of your body to give glory back to God..." 1 Corinthians 6:19-20

Sunday, November 26, 2023

Suffer Well. Race RECAPs

"Determine never to be idle. No person will have occasions to complain of the want of time who never loses any. It is wonderful how much can be done if we are always doing." Thomas Jefferson 

Andy and I watched an older movie with Justin Timberlake called "In Time". The basic story line was that time was a commodity, when you ran out, you died. You lived every moment with intention. 
Time was valuable. 

I think of my dad, such an amazing man. "The man takes the drink, the drink takes a drink, the drink takes the man." Addiction took him in his early 40's. He never saw his daughter graduate, walk her down the aisle or be a grandpa to her boys. Gone too soon and left time filled with tears to many. 
I think of my mother, a beautifully broken soul. "One day at a time." was not enough time for a woman that didn't want to live on this side of earth. No drugs, alcohol or man could give her the time to heal her wounds. 
Addiction takes time from you, it robs you, lies to you, deceives you. I still find myself choking back the tears of time lost. Years destroyed. Moments I questioned my purpose in all the pain. 
I decided years ago I would live out this life. If the Good Lord had me suffering, I would suffer well. 
I would not let my broken beginnings pave the rest of my time.
I knew how to suffer, I would suffer well and suck it up.  
I would pull up my bootstraps and dig in. I would fight. I would go down fighting. 

SUFFER well. 
There is something in the back of my head that scares me. I feel like I was born to suffer. I fight life like I am training for trials. The harder I prepare, the stronger I get, the easier the trial should be when it shows up. 
Even getting cancer, I felt like I had trained my whole life for it. 
I would find myself running with my fists clenched. I was so mad at cancer, so determined to fight it, ready to suffer because I felt like the Lord had prepared me from my beginning. 
I remember a day that running 3 races in a month was a lot, this week I ran 3 races in a week. 

November 19th. 
I flew solo to Nashville where my girlfriends picked me up for a race weekend.  The race was the TOUGHEST marathon course I have ever ran. Consisting of over 3000 feet of constant hills. 
My girlfriends themed the marathon Wizard of Oz , I was the scarecrow. 
The first half of the marathon I stayed with the girls for fun and encouragement. The second half of the race my suffering numbed out and I felt strong. I came down a hill at mile 20 and was ready to drop a gear. I could feel my body switch gears from fun mode to race mode. 
The last 5 miles my pace dropped and I began picking runners off. 
I finished smiling.

TIME: 4:14:08
PLACE: 2nd place Masters
OVERALL: 68/245
GENDER: 12/80
Erica was 2nd OVERALL, we both got handmade flying monkeys for awards. 
Your shirts are personalized with your nickname! One of the best race shirts I have ever gotten!

RACE 2: Turkey TRAIL Trot
November 23rd Thanksgiving
My sweet daughter in Love hates running. "I will do it because I love you and I get to be with you.." 
Shelby, Andy and I ran the turkey trot together. We had fun frolicking in the woods at Stoney Creek. 
I never looked at my results, because all I cared about with being with Shelby, I didn't care about pace just time spent with her. 

RACE 3:  Black Toenail 1/2 Marathon
November 24th. 
Andy and I have a warped idea of dates. He signed up to race this and insisted I do the same. My thoughts were to just try and beat last years' time of 1:59. I had just run my marathon 5 days prior and was still in the hurt locker. 
Several of our running friends were there as well. Half marathons are hard for me. It literally takes me 10 miles to warm up. 
When we took off I was by myself. About a quarter mile in, I see Andy blow by me. I picked up my pace to try and catch him. 
I was cutting in and out of the trail around other runners. I would jump off the trail to get around larger groups of runners trying to keep my eye on Andy. 
I caught up to Andy, running next to him for about a minute before he even spotted me. 
We laughed, briefly chatted and I told him I would "TRY" to stay with him. Truth is Andy is really strong on the trails and I was questioning my life choices again. 
I tucked in behind Andy desperate trying to stay on his heels. It took everything I had to not go head over heels, I felt so wobbly. He would see a runner, pick up his pace and I would panic. I fell back a couple times wondering when I would just let him go. 
At mile 10, I felt myself settled in. I had my music playing and I had been praying for miles. 
We came out onto the road, a gal had been running in my shadow for a couple miles presented herself. 
"You can pass us if you want, your doing great.."  I spoke to her. 
She replied "You guys have been doing all the work, thank you..." She then took the lead and moved on. 
That just didn't settle well with me. 
I could tell Andy was just holding pace. Andy knew ...."Nita, GO!! GOO race this..." 
I fought him for a few minutes but before I got passed again, I took off to catch her.
I caught up to her, but she was struggling, as I passed her I said "STAY with me, stay on my heels..." 
She replied, "I will." 
I am not sure when she fell back but I caught up to another runner. He turned around and did a double take, "ANITA! I run with you at Complete Runner..." 

"STAY with me, let's GO, you got this...." I cheered him on. 
And that is what I did all the way to the finish. I kept trying to grab runners to the finish, encouraging them because it encouraged me. 
I finished alone, breathless, trying not to vomit and the tank was empty. 

I raced it for Andy. 
I beat my time. 
TIME: 1:53:52
PACE: 8:42
Division: 1/7

"Count it all joymy brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full 
effectthat you may be perfect and completelacking in nothing." James 1:2-4

We can profit in our trials. Life will make you bitter or better. Fight the good fight. Put on your armor and remind yourself the Lord doesn't put you through something He doesn't see you through. He makes a way when there is no way. Your strength may fail but the Lord's strength is unwavering. 
Keep training. Be weary in well doing. When you do it all unto the Lord, give Him all the Glory, Honor and praise and you will see your strength in your suffering. 

The Lord uses all things, even the passion of a ragamuffin like me. 

In Peace, Not Pieces,

1 comment:

  1. Those flying monkeys are fantastic!!! Amazing job <3