Sunday, July 20, 2008

I: Injury Strikes

The letter “I” brings our alphabet tour roughly through the month of January. It was about this time last year that thoughts of marathons began dancing through my head. So in January of ‘07 I set a goal to complete a half-marathon. Trained for it, ran it, survived it, loved it. So when January approached this year, I pondered if I would like to run the Derby race again. I started training again, raised my weekly mileage, and registered for it. (Which again poses the question I raised last year of why in the world people pay money to run around for a really long time? It seems just silly but I'm beginning to understand it more & more) It was winter of course, and I learned to appreciate cold weather running with my tights, mittens, and ear warmers. Being on the very edge of the eastern time zone, training was especially difficult because the sun went down so early. It was hard to get a long run in after work when it was getting dark out. But no problem some reflectors wouldn’t fix! I was training in true cold-weather style.
Not a very good picture but that's because the sun
was going down & it was getting dark. And this just proves my
point of how winter running (and picture taking) is such a challange!
When an ice storm came through town one day, my office closed early so we could all make it home safely. In a moment of foolishness, I thought I would try to beat the storm in order to get in a good run that day. So out I go, slip-sliding across the icy sidewalks. I’m not sure if it was that run that did it or if I just raised my mileage too fast but for whatever reason, later that week I could barely walk. My right foot had a twinge in it that was excruciatingly painful. I researched online and decided I must have a stress fracture. It got so bad that I even went and saw an orthopedic doctor. The x-rays didn’t show a fracture but the doctor told me to take it easy for a while. Thus my training dream imploded.

You’ll have to stay posted through the rest of the alphabet to see how it turned out but I will say that the injury was indeed a gracious gift and trial from God. It was really tough for me to slow down and to separate my identity from that of a runner. I realized that running is something that I love but it does not dictate who I am. My identity must solely be founded in Christ and all other pleasures that He gives me should be fodder for thankfulness. When a pleasure is removed from my life, I can still be joyful as I am reminded that I will never be removed from Christ and He will never be removed from me. As Job reminds us, He gives and takes away. So I learned a little more about suffering and how to go about it in a God-honoring fashion. I’m certainly not an expert but I’m thankful for the opportunities to grow in it.

1 comment:

The Absaloms said...

Good word.

I also like your training vest. If running doesn't work out, it can double as an outfit to land planes with!