I am not sure I could add up the miles I have run in my life but I am sure it is in the 10s of thousands. What started out as a means to get fit, quite surprisingly became a rhythm of my life.
Running shoulder to shoulder with someone brings me great joy. It is not a race or competition. The speed or distance is often not the focus. It is how I do life with others by listening, encouraging and running alongside them. I have heard life stories on these runs and shared the same. We have worked out problems, formulated ideas, complained, coached and prayed together.
There is something safe, non-confrontational and empowering about logging those miles with others. Running provides the common ground for life-together…for connection…for relationships.
But there are sometimes when it is great to run alone. I realize when I run alone God meets me on the pavement! As the cadence kicks-in, my mind clears of all the noise, and I can tune in to what God has to say to me today. He has given me some of my best ideas, greatest ah-ha’s and calmed some of my biggest fears in those fast paced steps.
With each mile and milestone, running has helped me build my endurance, my resilience, and a greater life with God and others. It wasn’t always intentional, but as I look back at the ground I have covered, running has strengthened me both physically, mentally and spiritually.
With a mantra that started when running was hard and new, You put one foot in front of the other, I learned that I could do hard things and it starts one step at a time. It’s true for running and it is true for life.
On my outdoor runs I started snapping pictures I titled “Mommy on the Run”. Everything from the deer feeding on the grass near the trail, to a random potato on the ground or the turtle that seemed to be keeping pace with me. I hadn’t named it at the time, but habits and rituals were forming which helped create and celebrate the successes and picked me back up when I fell short. I set benchmarks and celebrated wins – races, miles completed, best times, a faster pace. The same concept can be applied to your life.
In running, you learn what it takes to be successful – better nutrition, water intake, sleep, recovery and stretching. The same concept can be applied to your life.
These mantras, habits, and rituals all help build resilience…GRIT!
- Where is the GRIT in your life? It may be forming in something you do everyday.
- What mantra or scripture verse plays in the back of your mind when the going gets tough?
- How do you celebrate the wins in your life? It is important to celebrate.
- What habits have fallen out of rhythm or need to be created? Set yourself up for success.
Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses 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 God has set before us.Hebrews 12:1 is laced up on my running shoes and I take it with me on every run.