My two year old loves watching Cars, the Disney/Pixar movie. He ‘discovered’ it over the summer. I have seen that movie so many times. It’s a really good thing I like Owen Wilson and that movie. But I know that opening line so well I can say it in my sleep. I probably have, too. I like that line, though. Lightning McQueen is using this mantra to focus himself on the race. And he begins by saying, “I am speed” and he ends with, “I am lightning,” which we then find out is his name. I love the first and last line. It is such a good confident statement. It is what I was thinking about today as I began my first day of actual running training for The Color Run.
I haven’t run any distance in about three years. I’ve been doing some research about getting back into running. One of the things I found was a suggestion that I should begin as if I were a beginner. Training for The Color Run is an 8 week training workout. The training chart for the run begins with week 1 running being to run for 3 minutes, then walking for 90 seconds. I’ve been walking all of January to get myself ready just to begin this chart. But I’ve given myself three extra weeks because I know I am not ready to even begin the week 1 training. Plus, if I experience an injury I will need time to heal. So, this week I thought it would be best to begin running for a smaller amount of time and walking for a longer time. Today I began by a workout first (squats, pushups, leg lifts, along with some upper body cardio). Then I grabbed my music (i.e. cell phone phone) and went outside and began running. I ran for two minutes and walked for one and half minutes. I repeated this as often as I could. My god, that was hard! I repeated this until I was a little over halfway home. The path I run is about a mile and a half long. That’s about 2.4 km for those readers outside the States. For me having to retrain my body for running, that’s kind of long.
I did okay until past that halfway point. That would be because there is this hill just past the halfway point, and it’s a bit of an incline. I got up it but that was it. I could not run for two minutes anymore. It was halfway through that hill, though, that the only thing that got me through it was the thought, “Just keep going, Jess. Just keep going. Get up the hill.” I literally, mentally, pushed myself up that hill. It was HARD. But I did it. I just wanted to get up the hill. I had one other thought in my head the whole time: if I give up now, I’ll never make it to the run. I wanted the run more than I wanted to stop. And I made it up that hill.
Once I made the top of the hill I did give myself a break. I walked for two minutes and then from there, instead of continuing to run for two minutes, I ran for 1 minute, walked for 1 minute the rest of the way home. It was my best and I’m proud of myself. I ran for more than half the distance and up that hill. I was not speed. I was not lightning. But I made it. I pushed myself beyond what I thought I was capable of, beyond the point of giving up because I wanted something else more. I want to succeed.
Endurance is the ability to do something difficult for a long time; the ability to deal with pain or suffering for a long time; the quality of continuing for a long time. (Merriam Webster Online Dictionary) What I did today was a type of endurance, but there are many types. Some I’ve been through myself, others I hope I never have to go through, or go through again. Abuse, neglect, disease, heartache, heartbreak, all these things require endurance. Sometimes, we have no choice. We get through it because we must. We develop endurance through adversity. We develop it through strength of character, and pushing ourselves to our limits. We never know what we can accomplish or endure until we go through it, until we test ourselves, until we decide we want something more than we want something else.
I want my dreams, all of them. I want them more than I want to quit. Tomorrow Dallas/Fort Worth is expecting another cold front. Earlier this week we had one and I pushed myself to go out. Tomorrow, though I am hurting right now and though I know it will be cold, I will go out and run again. I am not giving up. I have a goal in mind that far exceeds The Color Run and I will reach that goal. I will be speed. I will be lightning. I will succeed and I will not give up until I do. I will endure.
P.S. I am posting a link to an online journal of a friend who is having to endure stage 4 metastatic colon cancer. I would appreciate any prayers, thoughts, healing/positive energy sent his way. He is undergoing extremely aggressive therapy. This man was a very good friend to me in school and I am very sad to see him undergoing such a terrible disease. Having just been through losing my dad to pancreatic cancer I know what my friend and his family are going through. Please visit and read this true story that his wife is writing through her journaling. It’s an incredible love story. No one should have to endure this. Here is the link: http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/chrismanzo
All my love,