I have been slow getting back to running this season. Usually I start pounding the pavement when the weather gets nice – April or May. This year I didn’t start back up until June. My excuses?
- I am too busy.
- I went to bed too late and I am tired.
- I rather stay in the comfort of my bed that get up early to run.
I may not have even picked it this season at all, if not for my husband. I was thrilled when he decided that he wanted to shed a few pounds and get in shape. I needed to do the same. Plus, running together meant spending together, even if only for 35 minutes.
It’s been great. We get up early and run before the demands of our day of day begin.
Neither of us is running at a pace we did when we were younger and more conditioned. There are days when I am feeling strong and running a steady pace and he’s dragging. There are also days when he is feeling great and I struggle to keep up. But that’s okay, because we are running together.
When I run with someone else, I always perform better.
The Bible says that Jesus is a friend that sticks closer than a brother (Proverbs 18:24). I can just imagine Him in Nike sneakers running along side me. When I need that extra push he is there to spur us along. When I need to take a break He slows down a bit to walk with me. Just like my husband, He doesn’t take off and leave me by the side of the road gasping for air as I wait for my heart rate to come down.
I thrive with companionship. While I don’t mind the occasional run alone, with my GPS watch and iPhone to keep me company, I love having a friend with me. A few years back I ran a ½ marathon with three other moms. Two of the ladies were seasoned runners with paces I couldn’t match. Luckily the other one ran slower, just like me. We ran along side each other the entire 13.1 miles. We didn’t talk much, but that didn’t matter. What mattered was that she was there. I wouldn’t have been able to do it with out her. As long as she kept going I was going to run and vice versa. That’s when I decided, if I ever ran another long race, I wouldn’t do it alone.
I am so thankful that Jesus runs alongside me in my race. He is that friend that I can count on (John 15:15), who makes me better for being with him. I count on Him for encouragement to keep going, conversation pass to the time, and grace when I need a break.