I have always loved to run. With the wind in my face and the blur of scenery passing by, it makes me feel like my soul can fly.
I ran my first organized race in October 1989, when I was nine years old. It was just the one-mile fun run, but I finished in first place! As a competitive person who enjoyed sports, but never excelled at ball sports, this was great! I actually found something that I could do well.
Finally, I was winning at something, but this was short lived. Before too long, I wasn’t the fastest girl my age anymore, but the competitive drive in me wouldn’t accept defeat. That first race taught me that I could endure! So, if I couldn’t win a race by being the fastest, at least I could try my best to run further than anyone else. First the mile, then the mile and a half in junior high. Eventually, a 5K, 10K, half-marathon, 25K and then a full 26.2 mile marathon.
I don’t win any of these races, but it isn’t about winning the race anymore. It’s about endurance and the challenge and joy of meeting goals. Best of all, the love of running has helped me better understand the meaning of Hebrews 12:1 when we are told to, “lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us”.
If you are interested in trying your first race, or reaching for a longer distance, check out the Fresh 15 in Tyler this spring!