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Take Me to Church

Endurance running is fun, right? All fun and games? Always happy with every run? Well.... Not really, at least I don't think so. Some parts of training can be suffering of some sort. We have grueling speed workouts where we approach the feeling of nausea, knowing that if we cross that line, we've lost breakfast. We have long tempo workouts, maintaining a goal pace for longer than we're comfortable with. We push the distance on our long runs, getting sick of putting one foot in front of the other and missing time with our family and friends. Yes, training can be synonymous with suffering. But with suffering comes character.

If we put in the training and make it through the "suffering" then we become better, stronger runners. There have been times in races where I felt like I couldn't continue, but then I recall that tough training session where I felt the same way, persevered, and ended up doing really well. Tough training helped me qualify for Boston in 2012. It helped me with running 24 hours on a treadmill, and was my basis for making it 65.5 miles down the canal. My faith training similarly got me through some very trying non running moments in life.

I tell runners to trust their training and trust their coach. You reap what you sow. Do the work and you'll be closer to your goals. I find this is true everywhere in my life. I need to not worry so much when tough trials come my way. Rather than getting myself in the fetal position and closing my eyes, I need to trust God and trust my faith, in the same way that I trust my training.

In church this morning, we read from Romans 5; 3-5. I love the message here, for runners and life livers alike. "We also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not disappoint us."

So if we're in a trying time of life, stand firm and preserver, trusting your faith. If you're in a tough workout or race, trust your coach, trust your training and you'll increase your endurance.

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