Athlete in Training Part 1

Recently, I was given the opportunity to write a short paper and answer 4 questions concerning how the Christian faith relates to running. The questions/answers were based on Hebrews 12:1, “Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.”

Question 1: Who is in the Stands?

When I think about the spectators in the stands, I think you will find all sorts of people.  There are people who are passionate about the sport and find watching the competition a complete satisfaction and inspiration.

There are coaches who are hoping their athletes run their best and react positively to the specific training they’ve been doing.  There are past competitors who are wishing they were still in their “glory days” or hoping to see the next record be set.

There are also injured runners who are longing to be part of the sport, but they’ve been set back, and by watching and cheering they feel they are still a part of the competition.

Then, each runner has personal fans that are among the crowd. Friends and family who have supported and encouraged the athlete along the way.  And other personal fans, who’ve maybe just heard about the athlete and want to see if he can really execute the rumors they’ve heard about him.

Lastly, there are people who may have never run before, who don’t like to run, who don’t understand running, yet they find it interesting to watch how others find joy and pleasure in it.

Question 2: How do we prepare to run?

If I want to run my best I must always remember that running is a joy and a gift. If I let it become a chore/job – something I feel that I have to do, it becomes daunting and I find no pleasure in it.

People often wonder how I find the time to run. It’s easy – it’s become a part of me. It’s never a question of IF i’m going to run.  Each day, I know what’s on the training schedule and I know somehow it’s going to get done. It’s become part of my day, it’s a habit, it’s something that when I don’t do it – I notice a difference in the day and in the way I feel.

There’s days when I’m exhausted and the last thing I want to do is swing my tired legs out of bed and run, but I do it anyway.  Knowing that once I start I will want to keep going – even if it’s painful or tiring I know there’s the ultimate goal that I’m trying to achieve, and in order to achieve this I must meet the little goals along the way. There’s other days when I’m excited to run and I can’t wait to get out the door and meet the pavement. There’s days/workout’s that are tough and days/ workouts that are easy – but either way, I know that when I’m out there running I’m accomplishing exactly what I need to do.

Tomorrow – Part 2 :

Question 3 – How should we run?

Question 4 – Who should we watch while we run?

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