I did it!
Bruce and I headed up to Alton Bay, NH last weekend for the Big Lake Half Marathon. We had a blast!
We weren’t able to leave Rehoboth until 7-ish on Friday night, so after the three-hour drive, we pretty much got into town, checked in and headed to bed. The next morning I was up early and headed over to the starting line with a few friends of mine. It was 43 degrees when we started! Brrrr.
It’s so funny how life changes you. I’ve run one half marathon before. I was 25 years old, living in Atlanta and finishing up my requirements for ordination. I was working 30 hours a week and living in a small apartment with Bruce. I had so much time to obsess over it. I tracked each training workout carefully, logged times, miles and had somehow convinced myself that my worth was tied up in whether or not I could run as fast as other people. My life revolved around training for this race. I don’t remember how long it took me to finish last time (maybe 2:33?) but I remember reading other running and healthy living bloggers and – even though I was proud of myself for finish – still wondering why I was so much slower than them.
Fast forward five years. In addition to the fact that I was definitely undertrained (seriously – how do people who work full time train for marathons?? I can’t imagine the amount of time that must take), my priorities were just different. My life revolves around my ministry and it’s amazing how that shifted my perspective on things. I wanted to cross the finish line with a smile on my face and feel good the next day when I had to preach. Instead of staring at my pace watch throughout the race like I did in Atlanta, I spent much of the run praying for other people. Anytime someone ran by me in purple (and trust me – a lot of people ran by me!) I prayed for a cure for Rett Syndrome. I prayed for a sweet mom in my congregation who is facing a very serious health condition. I prayed for all of the moms in my life since Mother’s Day was the next day. I thought about our struggles and our successes over the past four years. I prayed that God would continue to give me guidance and wisdom as I grow in my leadership at RCC. With the exception of the last three miles (which were brutal and I’m convinced I only survived because I had amazing songs shuffle on my playlist!), the time flew by.
I didn’t care how long it took me to cross the finish line. I was proud of myself for trying, for setting the goal for myself and for finishing without caring that people finished faster. I still ran 13.1 miles! And you know what? At this point in my life, I just want to be great at other things. I want to be a dynamic preacher. I want to be a good teacher. I want to bring comfort to people in times of tragedy. I want to be the person and pastor God is calling me to be – in my life and (specifically right now) at the Rehoboth Congregational Church.
So I finished in 2:36 (according to my watch, I don’t think the official results have been posted yet). My legs were SCREAMING on the hills and I slowed down tremendously the last few miles.
But I had a freaking blast.
It was so nice to get away. We stayed right on Lake Winnipesaukee, so Bruce was able to do some fishing.
We ended up staying on Saturday night and waking up early early on Sunday morning to get back to Rehoboth. I was a little discombobulated when I got to church (I’m so used to working in my office on Saturday night!) but tried to focus on the amazing group of confirmands that was leading worship. I was so proud of them!
So 13.1 2.0 definitely looks different than 13.1 1.0.
But man, I am grateful for this journey.