Well can you believe I ran a marathon? Yes a full marathon. 26.2 miles of blood, sweat and tears!!
I still can’t believe I actually did it! Me?! The one who is regularly told I might actually get decent times if I didn’t chat so much or stop to take so many photos! But do you know what… that’s the kind of running I enjoy. I am never going to break world records or win races, I know that and I’m happy with that...because I do it for other reasons.
Running gives me space, it gives me time. It helps me work through issues and allows me to challenge any uncertainties I have. I can feel totally exhausted, but still have energy to run – a paradox in itself I think! I am a nicer person when I run as I tend to dwell less on my insecurities and my anxieties and therefore be a bit more relaxed. But it’s not just my mental wellbeing that benefit - running allows me to connect with my body in a way that I just can’t do in day to day life.
Basically, I pretty much hate my body! My chunky thighs, my wobbly belly, and need I go on?! But when I run, my body comes into its own. Those chunky thighs carry me distances like 26.2 miles, distances I never thought possible. They keep going even when my mind is ready to stop; my legs and my whole body to be fair is so amazing that sometimes I feel I could run forever.
But, there are also days when I also feel I can’t even run a mile, but when that happens I just look at what I’ve achieved so far (literally) since downloading the couch to 5k app 4 years ago. I do wonder sometimes how many miles I have run since then? I must check!
Running also gives me time to connect with God. Recently I was told that I should consider how my running interferes with my Christian life. But I’m pretty sure that the person who suggested that to me is not an endurance runner who’s experienced the joys of long distance! I spend a lot of my running time praying and talking to God, and I find it easier and more natural to talk to Him while I do run. I mean, where better to talk to God than in His beautiful creation?
So on that note, take time this week to enjoy your running and what it means to you. Slow down if need be. Stop to take pictures of the view if you want. Take a friend and use the time to catch up on their news. You can always race and push yourself another day. Just take time to be you.