Tuesday, March 29, 2011

My Story Lately.....

I have now competed in two races in my very short running career. In February, I ran in the Austin Livestrong 1/2 Marathon. It was the most amazing experience I have had and I have been in some super neat competitions. I have played in a state championship football game. I have coached in 3 more. I have coached two track teams that won state championships. I have been to college football bowl games. None of those really compared to the energy that I found at this race. Instead of a few teams competing, it was like each of the 20000 runners was a team and had their own supporters all for a cause to help fight cancer.

The race started on the steps of the Texas Capitol in Austin. I was there at 6 AM for the 7 am start. It was kind of like a dream as I warmed up in the dark for a race that I was sure I could finish but had no idea really how long it would take. My longest training run had been 6 miles. I was about to go 13.1.

My family was here from Lubbock and Corpus Christi were at the start and finish and my girlfriend and her little girl were at the half way point. I had many supporters from Blue Dog Rescue along the route also. I was a little overwhelmed before the race started. The main thing about running is and always has been this....There is no one to blame. It's just you . Running. You can't blame another team member or a coach. You can't hide behind anything. You're out there for everyone to see. I actually really like that. As a former track coach, I used to tell kids that the best kids in school were track kids. They put it out there. Risked looking awesome or stupid with no one else to blame.

The race started at 7am with a pyrotechnic display at the start. Too bad I was about 3 blocks away. I gradually moved up to the start and got to actually start the race at 7:13. I had my ipod in and going at 7 and I remember as I started the song that was playin was "Everyone needs a hand to hold onto" by John Cougar before he was Mellencamp. It was shoulder to shoulder running at the start and the crowd on the sidewalks were just as crowded. I really ran the first mile just in awe of the whole event. 20,000 runners overall and 10600 in my race.

After the first mile there was a waterstop and I wasn't thirsty but my friend Kurt said always get water or you might die! I felt good after a mile but I was going a little too fast because of all the crowd and well, everyone else was going pretty fast also. Plus I didn't want to be behind these girls who were kind of hefty and were wearing "Powered by Beef" HEB shirts!

Miles 2 and 3 were going down S Congress and I felt a little out of breath on the 3rd mile but my legs were holding up pretty good. Most of my training had been on treadmill and elliptical workout equipment and just a couple of times a week of actual running on the street x 3-4 miles. Once I got past my 3-4 mile workout distance it was going to be a question mark on how I would do after that.

I had some "chomps" energy chews that I started munching on here. I was still amazed that the entire route so far had been like a parade with people lining the streets like it was the 4th of July. I finally got super out of breath about mile 5 when we turned onto Highway 71 west towards 1st St. and had to walk about half a block. As soon as I turned onto 1st street there was a man down in the street with EMT's working on him. I had no idea how this person did until last week when a person in my running group was listening to me tell this story and he said it was his wife's uncle and that he had a seizure but was ok!

Being my first race ever, I decided I should be letting people know via facebook, texting, etc how the race was going and so I gave one mile updates. I had also received a text from Kimberly that she was at the halfway mark which was just ahead. I saw them and they were on the traffic side and cars were coming so I thought I was just going to be have to wave but I looked and little B was crying and so I waited for the cars to go by and went back and gave her a big hug and Kimberly too. Then I took off way too fast!

Mile seven and eight were not bad. I took a burst of Gu, which is pretty much a glucose paste for a energy boost and it helped a little. We were turning up Cesar Chavez and headed towards Mopac during this stretch. I saw more and more people walking through this part as it was getting close to the 9 mile mark. As soon as we turned North on Mopac, my quads started to shut down. Without quads you cant pick your knees up and running doesn't happen. I pulled over and started stretching while holding onto the guardrail there. It helped and at the Enfield underpass I stopped and drank about four cups of water. I knew I was cramping up and needed a lotta water now.

Mile markers 10-12 seemed to appear very slowly as I was in a slow jog through this pretty uphill section. Once I saw marker 12 I got some gatorade and picked it up because I could see the light at the end of the tunnel. As we made our way through downtown and around the Capitol I picked it up and I felt really strong on my finish and it was awesome to see my Mom and Lisa in the huge crowd as I finished my last 100 meters! I really didn't have the energy to celebrate. I just wanted to move forward and get out of the way. The 13.1 miles had taken me 2:33 . I really had no idea about what my time would be, I just wanted to finish the race and to have fun and enjoy the surroundings.

I got an awesome medal, some excellent recovery drinks and snacks from HEB but the main thing I received was confidence that I could do way more than I thought I could. I'll post some pics and video on here later today......And then I can report on my Capital 10 K......

Monday, February 2, 2009

God is always willing to forgive us

Have you been paralyzed by the failure to confess?

When I refused to confess my sin, I was weak and miserable and groaned all day long.

Day and night your hand of discipline was heavy on me. My strength evaporated like water in the summer heat.

Finally, I confessed all my sins to you and stopped trying to hide them.

I said to myself, "I will confess my rebellion to the Lord." And you forgave me! All my guilt is gone.

Therefore, let all the godly confess their rebellion to you while there is time.

Psalm 32:3-6 NLT

Confessing instead of hiding

We find many ways to get around admitting our sin. We rationalize our sins away. We try to drown out the guilt with all types of distractions. But over time, our sins deplete our will to pray. David was intimately familiar with all the ways one can try to hide sin. He had exhausted himself covering up his own sins. But everything changed when he finally gave up running away from his sin: "Finally, I confessed all my sins to you."

Like David, we can find our prayer life renewed when we freely confess our sins to God. Confess your sin and let God restore your prayer life to what it can and should be.

Prayer for today:

Dear Lord, I don't want to hide my sins anymore; I want to confess them to you today
On the other hand…

Always forgive your enemies; nothing annoys them quite so much.