Saturday, February 19, 2022

First Race of 2022!

Unless you're into running, you're probably not interested in this post, but today I got in my first race of 2022. It was a 6.5 mile "half-half-marathon" in Cary. I arrived at the Wake Med Soccer Park at around 10:30 for an 11:00 am race start. 

I've run this course maybe 10 times before so I know how hilly it is. 

Bundled up for the cold, off we went when the horn sounded. 

I had 4 goals going into today's race:

  1. Not look at my watch.
  2. Run the entire distance without walking.
  3. Maintain the same heart rate going uphill and downhill. 
  4. Finish under the 1.5 hour time limit.

By God's grace I managed to achieve each goal. 

What I loved about this morning was the sheer pleasure of running, surrounded by people who love this sport as much as I do. What I loved most was being able to do what I love to do. Yesterday I was listening to a podcast and a barber was interviewed about having to close down his barber shop during Covid. To make ends meet, he stocked shelves in a grocery store at night. When asked if he enjoyed that work, he replied, "Yes, it wasn't bad at all, and I loved the people I worked with. But I really missed doing what I love."

Doing what I love.

That is so true. I can't believe that God still allows me to what I love to do, be that teaching or running or lifting or writing or farming. I run at a comfortable pace, which allows me to spend most of my time in deep thought. 

Like all runners, I live in the present. I stand at the finish line happy and content and more than a little grateful. With Tennyson's Ulysses, we hear ourselves say, "And though we are not the strength which in olden days moved earth and heaven, that which we are, we are -- made weak by time and fate, but strong in will to strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield."

One mile at a time.