Lessons From the Pavement. Vol.1 – 3 Things.

Hey you!

Welcome to my new series “Lessons from the pavement”

If you have been following my blog or my instagram stories 😉 you know how much I love running. It brings clarity to my heart and soul. In this place I dream my biggest. Find my peace & strength. It is the number one place God speaks to me. And I am excited to share some of those words with you.

My mind is one of (if not the) greatest gift God has given me. My ability to think so many thoughts. Plan. Organize. Multi-task (although not perfectly) We get a lot done! I say “WE” because my mind is like it’s own person! ha!

With this amazing gift of thought also comes the downsides to it. Thinking all the thoughts and keeping them in line with God’s word. It can be challenging. Cause how many of you know ” the area of your greatest gift will also be the same place the enemy attacks you the most”.

Enter running…..

Lessons from the Pavement: Volume 1. 3 Things

I ran my 3rd Half Marathon this year. The first two races (one in April, one in June) left me feeling a bit down on myself. I had little energy, hit a wall by about mile 6 and my overall pace and time was way slower than I wanted.

Enter my goals.

Six years ago I had a knee injury and surgery that left the Doctor telling me I would never run again. Well, I knew that wasn’t happening so I believed what God says about my healing, worked super hard and here I am today running my 7th half Marathon in 6 years. But my ultimate goal was to run as strong and fast as I did before surgery.

After running the last two races and falling so short of my goal I decided to go into this one with a completely different mindset. And boy did God speak to me during this race!

First let me start by saying that I decided before the race that I was going to just relax and enjoy the run. BUT also told myself “Karen~ this is gonna be really hard” When I tell myself “it is going to be hard” then I am mentally and physically ready for the hard thing” And I truly believe that is the reason I took 15 minutes off of my time since that race in April. YES! You read that right 15 minutes! But more than that is what I learned about myself and others during that run is priceless for me.

Like I said God really speaks to me during my runs. This time He gave me 3 clear things to focus on during this run to make it a successful one. The downloads began right after I took my first step.

  • Don’t look at your watch for your pace. Simply run. Just the same as running forward through life. If we are always focused on our progress and how far we have gone, thinking we should be father or doing better. We miss out on the important things, like living. Enjoying the moment and season we are in. Good or not so good. So the whole run, up until the last 1/4 mile I never looked at my watch. I just kept my momentum the same.
  • Be intentional with every step and keep your eyes forward. In a nut shell do not compare yourself with anyone else. Stay in your own lane and run your own race. Run it as you not who you think you should be. As I began to run I thought; I am a runner just like all these other runners. Just different. Maybe faster, sometimes slower. But I am still a good runner. When I begin to let the comparison in, I am weighed down by the heaviness of comparison.
  • What you say you can do… you will end up doing… eventually I always hear people say “I can’t run” or “I hate running” I get it! It’s hard. But what else are you telling yourself you can’t do? And what would happen if you told yourself I could do that? Or better yet did that “thing” you think is hard and found out that you can do hard things? You are stronger than you think.

This man made up his mind that he would run a half marathon. Backwards. In a wheelchair! What would have happened if he compared himself. Told himself he isn’t a real runner. Nothing, that’s what. But he made the decision against the grain to “Run” in his lane. And you know what? He influenced every person who ran past him. It sure did encourage me. We can all do hard, sometimes impossible things.

This is Eliud Kipchoge. The first man to run a full Marathon, 26.2 miles in under 2 hours. It was his goal last year also but he finished in 2 hours 25 seconds. He missed his goal by 26 seconds. He didn’t quit. He kept pressing forward to reach what seemed impossible. What would have happened if he gave up last year? He would’ve never had this moment of crossing the finish line at 1:59:40 and being the first. Ask yourself, what am I saying “I can’t” to?

The only limitations in your life is you.

As you run forward in the season you find yourself in today, remember these 3 things.

1.Don’t pay so much attention to your progress. Simply take that next right step.

2. Live intentional. Enjoy every moment. Be Grateful. Stay true to yourself and who God made you to be. Stay in your lane. And for Pete’s sake Please stop comparing yourself to the person running next to you.

3.Begin to say “I can” more often. Say yes to the hard thing. Because on the other side…. that my friend is where you will find your strength.

Then you will find yourself standing on the other side of the finish line. Crushing your goal. With a medal around your neck to prove; I can do hard things!

Tell me one thing you are going to say yes to today?

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Are you going through a new difficult season and finding yourself having a hard time coping? 
I want to encourage you with three daily actionable tasks to help you make space to live in the moments and to find God right where you are.