3 things running has taught me about discipline

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3 things running has taught me about discipline

If you ask me, running 13.1 or 26.2 miles is a little crazy. I’m not a total weirdo…the only reason that I started running 14 years ago was that I was bored with cardio machines. But training for these runs has taught me some great truths about discipline that applies to all of life!

If you’re not a runner, you can still glean insights from this, but without the sweat and pain! 🙂

Here are my top three:

1.To accomplish hard stuff (like running a half marathon), you have to do some hard stuff. This is for real. There’s a reason that only about 1.9% of the population has run a half-marathon this year. (source)  And only .05% have run a full marathon. (source)  The reason is that it’s hard. 

Long runs in sweltering summer months are brutal. Sweat pours down your forehead and into your eyes; it stings.You swallow gnats while running. When there’s no bathroom in sight, and you’ve gotta go, you (ahem) improvise. Sometimes it’s just hard.

2. Running a marathon or half marathon requires sacrifice. Training runs often start long before dawn breaks. It’s not always easy to go to bed early on Friday nights to get up for a 6:00am ten or longer mile run on a Saturday morning.

3. The sacrifices made now will pay large dividends later. Here’s an example: Last Sunday was the race day for the Houston Half-Marathon. I knew that I’d be running 13.1 miles. However, on my regular shorter training day, my running partner couldn’t join me.

Words can’t express how much I didn’t feel like going on my own. In fact, a slow and heavy sense of dread covered me. Here’s what got me out there to do it…I knew that the race on Sunday would be affected if I didn’t do my regular training run. In other words, I wasn’t running for Thursday as much as I was running for Sunday’s results.

THIS is my very favorite thing about running and the most important truth about discipline that running has taught me. I decided to push through the dread and the not-wanting-to and did it anyway!

Plus, there’s nothing quite as satisfying as completing a long run when you just didn’t feel like it. This is true for all disciplines. You don’t have to WANT to do it, or FEEL like doing it. However, if you do it ANYWAY, you’ll reap the benefits!

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Long runs have their benefits! Quiet and beautiful sunrises like this one.

 

 

 

 

Worship, running, and sweaty selfies

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After a run and power-walk this week, my friend Lori and I took this sweaty selfie.

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You may be thinking what I’m thinking. Which is, “Wow.” If you’re a runner in the summer in Texas, after half an hour, you’ll have gnats sticking to the sweat on your face. It’s REALLY gross. But it does make you feel kind of hard-core. If you live around here and you’re a runner, can I get an “Amen”? Y’all know what I mean!

We are all happy because we had the best time out there on Tuesday morning! We kept a steady rhythm of exchanging stories of the different things going on in our lives and in our families’ lives. There are some difficult things and some miraculous things happening in our families. We just couldn’t stop talking and we were giddy with excitement with how we see God at work in our circumstances. By the end of it all, we realized that we probably didn’t run as much as we had wanted to, but that was ok.

We’d had one of our best mobile outdoor praise and worship services, gnats and all!

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P.S. I am RUNNING AGAIN!!!!! I’m so excited and grateful to be feeling well enough! I’m adding in a little at a time, and right now I’m at 1.25 miles as my max at one time. Besides that, I’m adding in shorter run intervals and plan to string them together. Wooooohooooooooo!