Wednesday, April 30, 2008

I was tired

I tried to run today, but I didn't. I was just too tired. I got up, drank some water, got dressed, put my headphones in, got my water bottle ready, went outside, started my stopwatch, started running, then....stopped and went back to bed. My back and legs ached, and I was really tired. I actually slept two hours after getting back into bed. I needed it. I didn't even go to sleep late, I just needed the sleep. It felt great to get the extra sleep, my only regret is the half hour it took to get ready and to fall back to sleep, that rest would have been nice.
I will run tomorrow morning, but only 5 miles. My body is getting pretty sore and I think more rest might be in order. I won't miss my weekend runs, but the ones during the week I might skip one a week or so. We'll see.

Monday, April 28, 2008

18 miles

I ran on Saturday. I finished by 8:30, I don't remember a lot of what went on for my run. I have been busy ever since the run. I finished my run by 8:30 because I had softball practice at 9:30 and mowed the lawns afterward which took 3 hours. It was a busy day.
During the run I listened to music, I don't remember what, all I remember is that the strap holding it to my arm was too tight and it was cutting off my circulation. I don't know why I didn't adjust it, I realized that my arm was numbing toward the end of the run, but didn't do anything to figure out why. I just thought it was part of my body shutting down after running 18 miles.
While running I think I said, "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me," about fifty times. I said it each time that I felt my body was slowing down and needing refreshment. I really think it helped out. I didn't walk once on the run and I finished in good standing. It felt good to have it out of the way. I only have one run left that is longer than this one. That's an exciting feeling. I have a little over a month left. I can't wait for it to be here.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

April 24, no run today

I was supposed to do 5 miles today, (I thought it was 4 because I did 5 on Tuesday) but I didn't. When the alarm went off, I just decided I wasn't going to run. I was really tired and felt that if I did run today, I would be feeling it for the rest of the day. I don't feel bad for missing it or feel that I am off schedule. Overall, I think that if I get the long mid-week run and the end of the week runs in every week I am fine. I am not saying that I am cutting my other runs out, but I just don't feel that I need those each week. I would guess that they are important, but for me right now, I don't always feel like I can complete them.
Hopefully in the next two weeks I will have a better attitude toward running. I'm going to need it.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

5:15 wake-up call, 9 miles

I'm almost at my longest mid-week run. I did 9 miles today. It went well. I like running with the temperature at about 55º, it seems just right.
I didn't run with my Ipod today. I thought it would be good to just run in silence. Silence is something that is not appreciated enough. The idea of just being silent with your words, and silent with what is going on around you is just not done enough in my life. Today I ran for an hour and 20 minutes with no distractions of noise. There were the occasional walkers that I would say hello to, but that was all. I went to sing a few times, but the only song that could come into my head was the Stephan Curtis Chapman song "Speechless." ( The words kept coming to my mind. The idea of everything that saw was created by him. I kept seeing buds on trees showing that there would be more growth. I saw flowers blooming. I saw the sun rising. There were so many things that I kept seeing that showed me that all of the things around me were created by God. It was a really neat way to spend my morning.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

April 22, 5 miles

Getting out of bed today was pretty easy. All it took was hearing the brakes of the garbage truck squeek. I didn't have it out or ready. I got out there with plenty of time. Actually, before I left the house, everything was still there. Oh well, whatever it takes to get out of bed. Today's run felt like a breeze. I had 5 miles for this morning. I ran it at a little faster pace and it went well. I even pushed the last half mile pretty hard. I finished in 41 minutes! I don't anticipate that type of time for tomorrow's 9 mile run.
Today I focused on praising God and being positive during my run. I had done this a week or two ago and it made my run go so much better so I wanted to try it again. I sang praise songs in my head and gave a big cheery greeting to everyone I saw. Today, I saw a lot of walkers out. I also saw quite a few people bringing their garbage out to the curb as well. It made for a big day of smiles with cheery good morning greeting to them. I really felt that it made my run go a lot better than normal. I think that I should definitely approach each run with this mentality. I felt great when I was running and I felt pretty good when I finished. I will definitely keep this up.

Monday, April 21, 2008

April 21

I'm tired of running. I am enjoying the thrill of betting closer to running a marathon, but I am tired of the act of running. I definitely know that i will only run if there is a goal for me to achieve. I will never be one to run just for fun. (Insert Back to the Future 3 quote here) I haven't experienced the "runner's high" or anything like that to help to motivate me. Overall, I am enjoying the process and the idea of having such an accomplishment of having run a marathon, but I know that just running for fun is not for me.
I didn't run today, I wasn't scheduled to run today. I was just sitting looking at the mileage that I still have to do. I have got a lot coming up. Here is the rundown of the coming weeks:
This week: 4 - 9 - 5 - 18
Next week: 5 - 9 - 5 - 14
Week after 5 - 10 - 5 - 20
Week after 5 - 8 - 4 - 12
Week after 4 - 6 - 3 - 8
Last week 3 - 4 - 2 - 26.2
That is a lot left. Luckily, it is only 6 weeks to go. I can't wait!

Saturday, April 19, 2008

12 miles in what should have been rain

From the moment I left my house, I thought it was going to rain. 12 miles later, I had only seen a handful of drops. The threat made me think to stay close to home, but then I thought that would have made me be a little more ready to go in if it did rain. That would have been nice, but I wouldn't have gotten my miles in though. For the run, I didn't walk at all. I didn't even slow down to drink.
I got to run with shorts and a shirt on today. I started with a hat, but realized that it was even too warm for that so I had to carry it. It served well as a sweat rag while running which was pretty nice.
During my run today I didn't have my mp3 player because of the threat of rain. I didn't feel like getting it soaked. I ran for almost two hours with total silence. There were a few walkers out that I said hello to. There was even an old lady that was in her garage that I said hello to and she yelled, "Have a great run!" That was nice.
I had no motivational music, I had nothing to keep my mind occupied but my thoughts. I didn't really have any big revelations during my run, but I started to reflect on the blessings that I have encountered in my life. I have two beautiful daughters. I have a wonderful wife. I live in a nice house. I enjoy my career and things are going well in it. Our finances are in good order. God has provided for a great life. I just thought about how great things are in my life and was thankful for all of it. I spent a majority of the second part of my run thinking and thanking God for all of his provisions in my life. It was definitely positive.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

5 miles April 17th

Today's run went really well. I got out running pretty fast (for me) and looked at my watch at the first mile and saw that I had just finished it in 7:45. That was much too fast. I slowed down a bit, but finished my five miles in 44 minutes. I kept up a swifter pace and it went well. I was sweating a ton when I got home. That was probably due to the fact that it was 43º outside when I left at 6 o'clock. I carried Gatorade with me for the whole jog and it went well. My hands didn't cramp, but I realized, I really don't drink too much while running. I wonder if I need to start increasing the amount that I drink?
While running I listened to the Newsboys. I like them. It takes me back to middle school going to see them perform. It is cool that they continued making music for quite awhile. I don't know if they are still doing new stuff. I know Audio Adrenaline broke up, I didn't know if it was the same for the Newsboys. Two songs stuck out to me. "Shine" and "Not Ashamed." Shine is a fun song that I sang far beyond it's time playing. I like the chorus:
Make 'em wonder what you've got
Make 'em wish that they were not
On the outside looking bored
Let it shine before all men
Let 'em see good works and then
Let 'em glorify the Lord "
It just is something that helps to give motivation to really live your life in a positive way that motivates people to really wonder why you live the way that you do and why you make the choices for you life. That got me into the song "Not Ashamed." The title of the song says it all. It is the reminder to not be ashamed for being a Christian. This is the important part. I know that I am different than the people that I work with. My choice of things that I do and words that I say separates me from them. When asked why I am different, I want to be able to tell people that the reason that I am different is because of my relationship with Christ. I also want to be able to tell them that the choice that I have made here on earth to be a Christian will affect whether I go to Heaven or Hell.
Unfortunately, I need to become a little more bold in my decisions to share with others my beliefs. The idea of not ashamed is not something that I struggle with. I am not ashamed for my relationship with Christ. I just struggle with sharing things with people for fear that our relationship might get weird if they are not as receptive to what I am sharing with them. I need to be more bold in knowing that if they don't have a relationship with Christ, then they are going to go to Hell. That should be motivation enough to be able to share my beliefs.
Two good songs. I will make sure to keep them in mind for a future run.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

8 miles of warmth

Running today was fun, I was hot! It was 5:40 when I left home and it was already a little warm out. The sun had also begun to rise already and I didn't spend really any time in the dark. I ran my big loop twice and around the neighborhood for the other two miles.
During my run today I listened to Jars of Clay and Michael W. Smith. That was good inspiration during my run, but I got to thinking about what I have been reading lately. I was thinking about the trials Jesus went through as he was beginning his ministry. As I am reading through Matthew I am getting to learn a lot of things that Jesus went through. I knew of the Pharasees and that they were pretty influential during that time, but I didn't know their real role. They were not cool guys. All they seemed to care about is following the laws so closely and nothing else. I don't think that I would be motivated to follow someone like that. I compare them to the people you hear about in neighborhood associations that go around and check to see if your house meets the neighborhood bylaws. They go around checking to make sure that your mail box is at the appropriate height, they see that your lawn is cut and your bushes are trimmed. They make sure that your house looks good and if not you end up getting a letter saying that your house is not up to code. I think of these people as ones that need a life. I say that is right in line with how the Pharasees were. They were just waiting for Jesus to make a mistake so that they would have a reason to arrest Him and to eventually try to kill Him.
Imagine if the Pharasees really did listen to Jesus' teachings. The Jewish religion would look much different. As would so many other things in this world (WWII). It would be interesting to see our world today if they had paid more attention to Jesus and accepted what he was saying.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

16 miles

Rain - terrible, Wind - terrible, Temp - terrible, run - finished. The weather was not nice outside, but I knew that I had to run so I just went for it. It didn't start out too bad, but about half-way through the run, it just got nasty outside. I was verbally cheering myself on to go. It helped a lot. I don't know if I would employ that strategy during the race though. When I got home, Melissa and Hannah were cheering me on in the window. That was a great way to finish my run.
During my run I thought about a few things. The first one was a line from an Eve6 song. I know, they don't have too many spiritual type quotes, but this one stuck out. I don't know the name of the song, but in the song the line is "If I could frame my mind, where would it hang." I don't know what context this is in for the song, but I thought about it in terms of if I could put all of my thoughts and everything that goes along with them up for people to see, where would it be and what would it say. That is a powerful thought. I then thought about the whole WWJD campaign. Jesus always knows my mind and what is going on. I was moved thinking about that today. I thought about how I would be embarrassed at times if my friends or others knew what I was thinking, but God always knows. How is that for embarrassing?
The second half of my run I thought about something that we read in Matthew 9. In this chapter Jesus is spending his time with tax collectors and other people that are considered sinners. The priests condemn Jesus for spending time with these people and Jesus rebukes them by telling them that it is the sick that need the help, not the healthy. My friend Jay talked about how we all spend so much time together but don't get out and spend time with non-Christians that much. I disagreed because I probably see more non-Christians at work each day than I see Christians. The problem is that we are wrapped up in so many other things that we fail to see how we can make an influence on those that are around us each day. I don't know what I am going to do with this information, but I know sitting on my hands is not going to make the difference.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

8 down to 6

Today was supposed to be 8 miles. Instead I made it 6. The reason, it was really windy, cold, and most importantly, it was raining. I was amazed that I made it 6 miles. It was horrible outside.
I had no thoughts while running. It was basically a put one foot in front of the other. When I got home, I read Matthew 8. I wish I could have been Jesus during my run and stopped the wind and the rain so I could have run in comfort. Unfortunately though, those things can't happen. Sometimes we have to go through the tough times to get to where we want to go. Today, I had to run in the rain. I did it, not all of it, but at least most of it. I am not Jesus, I know that I will have struggles often in what I do. Even through those struggles, I know that Jesus is there and can do all things for me if I need him to. I need to have the faith that the centurian had in chapter 8 when he told Jesus, "Just give the order for my servant to be healed and it will be done." Prayers or requests do not get answered as quickly as they did in this passage, but God does have the power to do all things. That is something I need to always remember.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

April 9th

I didn't get my 8 miles in today. I actually didnt' get any in. I woke up feeling pretty crummy. I am the last in the family to get sick. The girls are at the doctor right now as I write. Luckily, it is only my throat right now. I am just struggling to talk. Even luckier, I already had assignments planned for my class that didn't require me to talk too much. Hopefully this continues as I recover.
I plan on putting my 8 miles in tomorrow and probably skipping the 4 mile run that was scheduled for tomorrow. It stinks missing runs, but I have got to stay healthy, that is more important.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

April 8th

The girls are 6 months old! How crazy it is that they are this old already.

My four miles went pretty good. I stayed in the neighborhood but didnt' bring water. I think I am only going to take it out for any runs 6 miles or more. It went well. I had two dogs chase me for short distances. It was sad. They were both little dogs without collars. I had to stop to make sure they didn't keep running after me so they didnt' get too far from home.

While I was running I listened to DC Talk's album Jesus Freak. Early in the album is the song "What if I stumble?" I listened to the lyrics very intently. I actually repeated it once to make sure that I got them all. Here is a link to the lyrics. I also lumped this in with Matthew 6 that I read today that talked about doing things to honor God and not yourself. I kept thinking about how I influence those around me. The people that appologize for swearing around me. The people that know that I am a good guy and that I go to church. I want to constantly want to make sure that I don't mess up. But I got to thinking. Am I trying to not mess up so I don't look bad, or so God doesn't look bad? That was the tough question I ran with in my head for four miles with. I am sure that I will come up with a decent answer, but I think I already know that I look for my own glory often before looking to glorify God.

Monday, April 7, 2008

April 7

I did get my 15 miles in on Saturday. I strayed a little too far away from my water and had to walk for a bit to get to it. It was scary. I got dizzy and sweat was starting to get into my eyes. After getting my drink, I had 3 miles left and did just fine. As I was getting back to my house, my neighbor Sharyn was just leaving and she stopped to chat. She was impressed at how I was able to talk so easily with no real problems with breathing. I didn't think about it until she said it, but I thought it was pretty cool.
As I ran, I just sang praise songs. We have been doing a study with our small group titled Too busy not to pray by Bill Hybels. Last week we talked about praising God. I think we all decided that in our every day lives we don't spend enough time really praising God for how mighty and wonderful he is. After thinking about how I praise God, I have really made a hard effort to think about how wonderful God really is. I have been singing praise songs that go all the way back to church camp when I was in elementary school (Building Block anyone?). It is amazing how much your outlook changes when you are walking into a store singing praise songs imagining heaven. It just makes the day go so much better with your perspective being toward godly things rather than just going through the motions. I am definitely going to continue this routine.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

April 3rd

No running yet today. I think there might be some time later today to do my run. We'll see. I know that I need to do it.
This morning I read Matthew 3. It is the one that talks about John the Baptist and Jesus being baptized. The story of John the Baptist is really neat. How crazy it was that he just waited out in the desert for God to call him into service and to tell him what to do with his life. John was a "Jesus Freak" and he did everything in his life to live that way. There was no mistaking that John the Baptist believed in what he was doing and devoted his life toward God. It would be interesting to see how that type of lifestyle would be accepted in today's world. I would like to see myself be more devoted toward God and to live my life that way so that people all around me know where I stand.
The way John preached was not one that is really accepted well in our day. From the way that it was described in the Bible, I would compare some of his tactics to those that stand on the corner and say "Repent or go to Hell." I am sure that there were a bunch of people back then that responded undesirably as they do now, but John was doing what he thought best for his ministry.
I would say there needs to be a balance between telling people they need to repent and being able to reach them on a personal level. People today just don't listen and respond to the same things that they did in the past. If they did, it would make some things much easier.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

3 miles yesterday 0 miles today

I am taking the day off running today because my morning is just really busy and I'm going to the Cubs game today. Yesterday's run went really well. I ran hard for my 3 miles and finished in pretty good time.
I thought yesterday about how excited I am about reading through the Bible with the guys in my small group. We are starting with the New Testament and doing it in a year and then we will go through the Old Testament. I know I am only one day in, but it is going to be neat taking the time to go through chapter by chapter.
I am excited about the outcome to follow with this endeavor and the idea of actually reading the Bible cover to cover.