When I started running in 2010, I developed a dream of running a marathon. I didn't know how long a marathon was. Then I realized the training wasn't going to work out...and besides, my 30 minute runs (which I worked up to after several weeks of short runs starting at 4 minutes long) weren't very fun.
What a drag. Running. I disliked it a lot. But I saw results. Pounds didn't fall off but they did come off. By October 2010, I had dropped 50 pounds and in September had completed a half marathon. What a rush! I found running to be imperative to my days - I was happier than I'd ever been. Not because I had lost weight (although that was icing on the cake) but because God was working in my heart to transform me into who He wanted me to be.
Today, I have regained 10-15 of those pounds and dropped them again, along with 10 or so extra pounds. A large part, due to my joy of running. I find it amazing what God has made my body capable of. Today I ran 18 miles on a treadmill. I owe that to no one else but the Lord. I would never have been capable of such a feat if I didn't know what He was capable of.
I am amazed at my body - it's not perfect but I finally feel like it's the body God had planned for me. I finally feel like I'm the woman He has made me to be. No perfect, still very much sinful and flawed but aching for His holiness. Desiring to walk in His footsteps as a woman, a mom, a wife, a friend, a daughter, a sister, a runner.
I do run for the pleasure of it. I do run to maintain my weight. I do run to see what I'm capable of (26.2 in less than 2 months!). Mostly, though, I run for Him. I run for my God. I think He takes pleasure in my running. I think He smiles when I lace up my shoes. I think He smiles when I push past mental limits and physical limits - when I hit that mileage I've never ran before, when I beat that time I've never beat before. Win or lose, it doesn't matter to Him (which is good because I will never win a race)...but it matters to Him. He loves to give me gifts and running is one of the best gifts (outside of people) He's blessed me with.
He's given me one body for this life. Just because my new body will come later doesn't mean I don't have to care for this one. His Holy Spirit dwells in this body! I must take care of it the best I can. Running and eating healthier has allowed me to do this. God has helped me learn self-control (and moderation - because, let's face it I had birthday cake and Valentino's today!). I've learned discipline - I was so undisciplined outside of school work (even then it was pretty lackadaisical because school was easy). But I've learned to care for my family and my home the way I care for my body. It's not perfect (can I emphasize that enough? probably not)- my house has dust bunnies and sometimes I forget to discipline my children's hearts versus their flesh - but I'm trying. I'm striving and I've come so far. I have so far to go yet but Lord, as long as you are with me, I'll keep going.
Anyway, I wanted to leave you with pictures today of my progress. Yet I was too lazy to take pictures today (and my camera batteries are dead) so another day. :)