Halfway There {cross-country thoughts}

Halfway There {cross-country thoughts}

Last weekend, my teammates and I ran our third cross-country meet, the halfway point for our season. I figured now is as good a time as any to get some thoughts about this season down.

What with my hip problems and everything, I’ve been careful about my summer training. I didn’t want to get to the end of the summer and push myself so far that my problems resurfaced. Still, I trained hard enough to get stronger and feel ready for the season to begin, which it did in mid-August.

Three weeks prior to the beginning of the season, I started remembering what meets were like. My brain zeroed in on the memories of pain. Pain that was coming my way soon. In every situation when I have anxiety, I have a choice to make: choose fear or choose trust. This time around? I grabbed a pen, my journal, and my Bible. Tools in hand, I wrestled it out. Through all of it, I was asking for perfect peace, the ability to trust. Fear didn’t win this time because Jesus and I, we fought it away. No victory for you today, we told it, and that’s been the end of it. Pretty much every day leading up to my first meet, I consciously took time to pray over my mindset, and the team as a whole. These prayers have made this season that much sweeter.

The first meet rolled around. I didn’t know how I would do, but I knew whatever happened, I would commit the race to the Lord. I had a fantastic running buddy (shoutout to Alice!! She’s mentioned here) and a summer of training behind me. Standing at the starting line, I was ready. As it turned out, our race went great! I got a PR (personal record) by nearly a minute. When I was recapping things in my journal, I wrote, “is there such a thing as You being too good to me? I don’t deserve this at all.”

Second meet was a much tougher giant to tackle. The course was harder, it was swelteringly hot & humid, and overall I think it was just one of those days where I wasn’t doing 100%. At the starting line, I knew I was ready, but it occurred to me that deep down, I was getting scared. I was having flashbacks to one year before, when I had stood at that same starting line, ready to bawl. Are you still having this fear? I asked myself. After all this time, do you still think God is not going to be good to you today? Fear really wanted to win, but with Jesus’ help, it got nowhere. Granted, no PR’s happened at that meet, yet I feel that it was meaningful because of the lessons it taught me.

Molly is on the left, and I'm behind her. :)

Molly is on the left, and I’m behind her. 🙂

Third meet. I was pumped up, I’ll be completely honest with you. I didn’t have any nerves. A couple of days before, I wrote on my running log, “I’m ready for a PR at this meet. We shall see.” Part of me knew it was very possible. Another part of me knew that I still had no control over the race! As our team began the race, I realized this was more true than I’d thought! One of our top runners (*sniff* dear Lauren) was injured the whole week before the meet, so therefore she was not running her best. Another one of our top runners PASSED OUT in the middle of the race (okay, so it freaked me out just a little bit). Other runners on our team did not have good races due to injuries/breathing issues/just bad days. We can’t control these things! They just happen. That said, there was definitely a need to trust during this race. Even though all of this was going on, I was actually having a fabulous race. My pacing was pretty much right where I wanted it, I was passing people, and I felt great (as great as you can feel when you’re running a race 😛 ). I caught my dear friend, Molly (mentioned here), at the end, and finished with a PR and a great place on our team. Looking back, I think it was the best race I’ve ever run. Not as far as feeling good, but as in pushing myself and doing my best.

This season has been the best yet. Jesus is working and fear is losing. Let’s keep it this way.

A couple of fun pics for ya 🙂

Left to right: me, Lauren, Kait, and Molly.

Left to right: me, Lauren, Kait, and Molly.

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One of my favorite pics of us for sure. 🙂

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Lauren, me, Claire, Ellyn, and Petra. 😀