I never liked running. I avoided it in p.e. every chance I could. I hated being sweaty and out of breath. But in 2008, my friend Ashley taught me how to run. She showed me how to start off slowly, running in 30-second spurts, resting in-between, until I built up my endurance. It wasn't long before I was hooked.
Since then, running has become a hobby and a stress reliever. I enjoy the time to think, to listen to music, to see the beauty of creation. Until this past Saturday, the most I'd ever run at one time was a 5k. But I've decided to run the Mercedes half-marathon in February, so I am now training to gain endurance. On Saturday, I ran 4 miles. To other runners, that's a breeze, but for me...it was huge! I set a goal and accomplished it. You see, running is mostly mental, and I am in the process of training my body and my mind. And on mornings like today, when I'm tired and my legs feel like lead, it's my mind that keeps my body going.
I've mentioned often in my posts how much God has changed me in the past year. One thing He's showed me is that finishing well is important. Although I didn't start off well due to choices I made, I want to finish life well. I want to accomplish things I set out to do. I want to train my mind to endure when life is hard. I want to push a little harder when I'm ready to give up. And I want God to get the glory for it all.
So today I'm thankful for running...not just the ability to run, but for what God has taught me through it. While I won't have the best time, and just might come in dead last in the half, I will finish with a smile on my face. Because giving up is not an option.