Sunday, December 18, 2011

(First) 5K!

Well, there is good news, and there is bad news. The good news is, I finished the 5K, and just as I planned, I didn’t stop and (clearly) didn’t die.

The bad news is, I didn’t finish in 24 minutes, nor did I immediately drop 30 pounds upon completion of the race.

They don’t tell you that when you register.
Seriously though, it was a fun day and a legitimate accomplishment for She Who Does Not Run. My friends and I arrived and parked, toting our coffee and lamenting not wearing cuter outfits. I registered, and then realized that I would have to run with my phone, credit card, car key, etc. Turns out these things take some planning. We waited in line for the bathroom for about 6 years, missing our initial start time, necessitating starting with the “walkers and joggers”.

The run started out at a slight uphill incline, but it was tolerable. I feel like I spent much of my energy dodging those walkers. As the course continued, and I spotted the “1 mile” sign, I nearly laughed. I was certain it had been at least 2 at that point. Somewhere between miles 2 and 3, I got tired. And somewhere else between miles 2 and 3, came a hill. I came, truly, THIS close to slowing to a walk.

Instead, I found myself in prayer. A prayer of gratitude for a body that allows me to walk, let alone run, and a prayer that my own fears, failures (fear of failure, really) and the voice that tells me it’s okay to stop, wouldn’t win this time. Truly, the finish line would not have been as sweet had I not crossed it with a keen awareness of what I can do, and who it is that allows me to do it. I finished in 31 minutes, 14 seconds. No 8 minute miles, but no giving up. You would’ve thought I’d run a marathon, and as completely ridiculous as it sounds, in that moment I was sure I could.

As with any goals, when the fun is over and you get peanut butter on your hard-earned t-shirt (yes, it happened) I found my motivation lacking. Once a milestone was completed, I lost sight of the long term goal.

So often, it seems, this happens in life, as well. In the minutiae of the everyday stuff and things I get so caught up in. I lose sight of the purpose to which I’ve been called, and grow discouraged and doubt that I can ever accomplish anything beyond getting through the day without accidentally setting any buildings on fire or causing some other catastrophe. So often I choose to slow to a walk, rather than continuing to run, believing in the voice that tells me, “You can do this. You can do this because I made you to do this, and I am right here with you. “
Some words of inspiration on the topic:

“Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already arrived at my goal, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.” -Philippians 3:12-14.

I love it. Specifically, forgetting what is behind, and straining toward what is ahead. There is so much ahead, I hope. So much I haven’t planned for or even considered.
But first, my next 5K. Saturday, February 11, 2012. I’ll definitely remember to pee before leaving the house, this time.


Jen said...

Jessica, I stumbled upon your blog randomly and was stunned when I read those inspirational words on your header. They are JUST what I need to read right now! Then I was re-stunned (?!) when I read about your run. Good for you! I am a running coach of a beginner group so I know how you are feeling (I was there not that long ago myself). You CAN do it & I will be rootin' for you in February. Have fun!

Jess said...

Thanks Jen!! This made my day...thank you so much for the support!!