Thursday, April 22, 2010

Day 1...Kind of. :)

I think I'm going to keep blogging about the running. :) It's such a fun way to process what God speaks during the times spent on the road. And I fully believe that He's given me running as a way to both create intimacy between Himself and me, and also for me to share what He teaches me. Win-win. Right? Or, as Michael Scott would say, win-win-win! :) haha!

The hardest part of a marathon is often not the training or the race itself, but the post-race week. You're sore and recovering and tired and hungry, and all you want to do is run really fast because you just had an awesome experience on the race course! But...Your body says, "No!" haha! :)

I took the day after the marathon off from running and did a ton of walking to get my legs stretched out and moving. It was a great opportunity for Mom and me to explore the Freedom Trail in Boston. Then, I did an easy run yesterday morning along the Charles river and up around Harvard. Now THAT was just picturesque. It was exactly like what you see in all the movies. Running by the river with the rowing teams out practicing, all the Harvard students out for their morning runs, too. :) It was awesome! And Harvard Square was super cool.

Then, today, I returned home. Back to real life.

One thing I'd been praying about was how to re-enter the world of non-training. After being in training for four months, it's so hard to return to balanced everyday life. Especially when it comes to running. You're so used to having a daily schedule and pace goals, but all of a sudden you're left with complete and total freedom. For me, it's always a good time to evaluate how long I should take it easy and when I will do my next race. I'm formulating that plan right now, but I KNOW that I will not be training until at least June. So, I need to be strategic in resting and recovering and letting my body heal.

It's so hard mentally, folks. I'm really fast right now! And I do NOT like the idea of losing all that speed. But I know that if I don't, I'll do more damage to my body than good. My little frame needs some time to recharge. Trouble is, I absolutely loathe cross-training. haha! :)

So, here's the scoop. I learned this weekend that running is a gift from God. "Didn't she know that already?" you may ask. Well, I kind of did, but I kind of didn't. I think I'm realizing it now. Not everyone is called to do this. Not everyone is gifted to be able to run that far or fast. God has given running to me as a HUGE gift. I want to start being more grateful for it. And, I want to start being a better steward of it. If that means that I cross-train once a week in order to keep it strong, then so be it. I have to be a good steward of the gifts He's given me, just like everything else He entrusts to me.

Today, I took a baby step in the right direction. I took off my Garmin. :) haha! Baby step, yes, but a big one. With the Garmin watch, I automatically go into training mode. I check my pace and miles and find it nearly impossible to run slowly or easily. I will constantly be trying to get a better time. Today, I left the house for my normal loop, and was completely free of any pressure. I have no idea what my pace was. I'm sure it was slow. But I know that I was more fully engaged with God on the road than I had been in a while. Yes, the training runs were very spiritual, but this one was more intimate. I had nothing to distract me from prayer and communion with Him.

So, that's going to be my "goal" for the non-training period. My goal is to not have a goal. haha! My goal will be to enjoy the running for what it is: a time to get myself in touch with my Father and hear from Him. A time to let my body recover and enjoy the running again. A time to pray for my friends and family and to intercede before the days begin. And, I have no doubt that it will be a sweet time. :) Then, when training rolls around again, I'll be ready to go.

Until then, it's all about enjoying the road. :)

Ciao, friends! :)

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