Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Life according to the triathlon

Last weekend I traveled over night with my dad to do a triathlon. My dad first got me into running the summer after I graduated from college. I have been so thankful to get to do several marathons with him. A few years ago he started doing triathlons--crazy, I know. He really is an inspiration to so many out on the race course--usually finishing last, but with the best smile and sense of humor to match. (As he finished, he said, "down to the lake, I'm doing it again!")

Here is our picture before we left.
-you've got to dig a grandpa who wears a shirt with a picture of his grandkids on it!

This was only my second triathlon so I was a bit nervous. So nervous that I forgot my swim cap in the car, needed a stranger with a similar road bike to show me how to switch gears (I hadn't ridden Tim's "race" bike since the fall) and almost got disqualified while figuring out the gear thing for riding around the parking lot without my helmet on! And this was all before the race started.

Then the race started and except for the initial swim panic, you know, deep water, lots of kicking and splashing, I settled in for a pretty enjoyable hour and forty-four minutes. The race course was beautiful and the weather perfect.

During the run, I started feeling worn down. My legs were tired, I had to potty and the hills kept on rolling. I did my usual head down so I could only see a few feet in front of me. I think this helps me to keep a bit more focused. When I look straight ahead, the hills and distance left can intimidate me. I can get caught up in the long distance instead of the small distance that every step I take covers, which brings me closer to the finish.

I was thinking of this technique as I pushed through and I thought, wow, that is really Biblical.

"Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life? not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own."

"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."

We are all in a race--the race of life. How should we be running? We can always be looking way into the distance (future) and worrying how it will all pan out. Or we can see all the obstacles that seem to be blocking our finish line and get discouraged and even give up.
We can, in essence, put our head down, focus on Jesus and run. We can take our small daily steps forward in the direction that He leads us and not allow the hills/obstacles to cause us to change course. We can trust that every step is bringing us closer to His desired outcome for our lives.

How's your running?


  1. Great post! Thanks for sharing... :)

  2. Love you and your dads great to share so much in common. I too love when everyday moments turn into spiritual lessons. I am not a runner, have only done one mini-marathon, but I remember the feeling of finishing, and thinking I would do it all again just for that feeling. I often remind myself of that on hard days...keep on going, and when we finish in the will be MORE then worth it. Thanks for sharing your thoughts...always encouraging.

  3. good job on the triathlon:) and your dad is so cute. Reminds me of my mom. She has done quite a few triathlons and she is my running buddy:) Love what you said "put your head down, focus on Jesus and RUN!!!!". Hope you are having a great summer so far:)

  4. what the heck?? you did another tri? why didn't I know that, you crazy lady?????!!!!!! you are a beast, woman! and i love ya!!!

  5. So true, head down- focus on today- what He wants of me today! Thank you for the reminder!

  6. WOW!!! I knew you were a runner but I didn't know you did triathalons! Awesome!!!