My friend Mark Combs is a runner. He runs about six to seven miles per day, and is considering trying to qualify for the Boston Marathon (which he will, by the way).
I, as his friend, am not a runner. The thoughts of it do not enchant me in the least. Yet, this morning, I ran. Why?
1. Mark issued to me a challenge. Here in Lexington, KY, Central Baptist Hospital sponsors each August a 5K race called A Midsummer Night’s Run. I had no idea. Why? I’m not a runner and events like this just fly under my radar. But Mark issued me a challenge. “Matt, if you start working on it now and get in shape to run in that race by next August, I’ll come up and run it with you.” Normally, I dismiss those challenges because “I’m not a runner.”
But then it hit me — “You know, I can do this! This is a do-able goal!” As a preacher, I keep speaking about discipline, self-control, perseverance. Yet, there are areas in which I do not have this. This is a challenge that is do-able. And I need to let the Gospel infiltrate my exercise habits.
So this morning, I ran. I ran a 1/4 of a mile, then walked a bit, ran another 1/4 of a mile, walked a little bit, then ran the rest of the way home — totalling 3/4 of a mile. For someone who hasn’t ran since high school (Lecanto High, 1989), I thought I’d better take it slow. But it’s a start.
2. I need the exercise. A few months ago, I wrote on how I dropped from 206 to 186. I have a small frame, so I needed to lose it. I’m now back up to around 192. With that, plus the heart history my family has, I need to begin exercising and getting this intertube off my middle and heighten my metabolism.
3. My body is a temple of the Holy Spirit. This is the body God gave me for him to use. I need to begin taking care of it.
Any of you out there taking up running? Any tips?
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