Accountability to 5k
In 2012 it started out as accountability. My friend “T” and I discussed using an app on our phones to teach us how to go from the comfort of our couch to eventually run a 5k.
So I got up early in the morning before work and headed to the gym. Plugged in the headphones on my phone and dialed into the “Couch to 5k” app. Adjusting the speed on my treadmill, I was off. Walk a little, run a little, walk a little, run a little; increasing the run time each session. I eventually ran more than I walked. Weeks later, I was ready for a 5k.
I spent time running outside preparing for the different terrain from that of the gym. Blame it on the shoes; I had a swollen ankle. I still tried to run on the swollen ankle because I was determined to make it to my first 5k in a run that honored the health of the child of a co-worker/friend. But I never made it. The ankle gave me too much trouble.
Then I had shoulder surgery and was told not to run 😦
My shoulder healed and I began running this summer. Knowing that I had been able to run a 5k on the treadmill, I did not give up. Throughout the summer, I had been out running/walking in my neighborhood. I finally had been conditioned to the feeling of the pavement as opposed to the feel of a treadmill. I never really ran a whole 5k outside, but knew I could do it if I really tried.
My husband and I signed up for our neighborhood 5k walk/run while at a summer neighborhood get together. I thought at that time we would walk together, but as I was out running more and more, I knew this was my first opportunity for a 5k. So yesterday was the day of the race.
I did not wear headphones with my familiar motivational music as I ran. Instead, I made friends, in my head, with a girl in a pink tutu and silver tiara as I kept pace with her. She fell behind me when we passed a water station by a church. Later she passed me, most likely up the difficult hill. Some people around me stopped running, but their walking pace was still faster than my run, but I did not quit. Many times I had to remind myself that I have endured harder things in my life than running 3.1 miles. I reminded myself of situations that took longer than this race and I made it through them so I knew I could make it around this course.
I knew the second hill wanted to kick my butt, but I did not give it any satisfaction. Mandisa, one of my favorite recording artists sings a song titled “Overcomer”.
You're an overcomer
Stay in the fight ‘til the final round
You're not going under
‘Cause God is holding you right now
You might be down for a moment
Feeling like it's hopeless
That's when He reminds You
That you're an overcomer
You're an overcomer
Yes, Mandisa, this song was playing in my head. Thank you!
Yesterday, I realized the importance of sideline spectators. Nobody knew me by name, but since it was a Halloween run, and I was dressed as a bee, I could hear the three little girls in their jammies standing in their doorway cheer me on. I could hear the crowd of neighbors that had a dozen lawn chairs lined up on their curbside cheer for the bee. I could hear claps of encouragement as I worked my way up a hill. As motivation, I did not want to disappoint any spectator, so I kept running. My husband, dressed as a bee keeper, was walking/jogging the 5k behind me. I had him in mind as I ran. I knew he was cheering me on in the distance. As I crossed the finish line, I heard the last spectator cheer for the bee.
Running this 5k is a big deal, especially as it was my first race. I never stopped to catch my breath or bother with the cramp in my leg or my side; I just kept going and all those pains went away.
It started out as accountability with my friend “T”. I never gave up and I hope I am an encouragement to others. Do not give up on your dreams or your goals. It may not happen when you want it too, but keep a relationship with God and He will let you know if what you want is in His plans for your life. He will make it work out.
Acts 20:24 (NIV)
However, I consider my life worth nothing to me; my only aim is to finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me—the task of testifying to the good news of God’s grace.
Thank you “T” for the initial accountability. I never would have written a post like this if it wasn’t for you!