I’ve run at least three days a week for about eight weeks now. There have been two official 5k’s in the mix and I’ve logged about 10 miles a week. It’s not my personal best but it feels like a good post baby come back.
And. My whole body hurts…head to toe.
Upon finishing a 4.5 mile run on the treadmill the other day, I noted that I had ran a decent distance and gotten no where…I was in the exact same place in the Provo Rec center overlooking the “lion” basketball court. How strange! And how profound.
This really has me thinking. Why do I do it?
For one, I love the time with my friend. There’s something about talking through life’s joys and challenges with someone that’s just a bit further along in the trenches of marriage and motherhood.
Then there’s the amazing sense of discipline; knowing I’ve gotten up to work my body and meet a goal despite what the night consisted of for me and the small fry. I like to sweat…there’s something to be said about laboring by the sweat of our brow (and other parts) to work at something. It matters to me.
Then there’s this thinking that comes with the physical toil. Like looking at the treadmill and celebrating the distance despite no real mileage covered or scenery changed. It’s poetic in a way…climbing on a machine to work and exercise and struggle. And knowing that this is a metaphor for my life: I’m learning that life is often ho hum…that it can be the same thing over and over, mechanical. But if I’m seeking for personal growth and development so I can be more fit for the kingdom, I’ll find it. The routine of it can become meaningful. The treadmill is helping me increase my endurance and lung capacity, it’s helping me to be steady and consistent. I need to learn to be steady instead of running in bursts then collapsing in fatigue. I’m learning to pace myself and not run faster than I have strength. But. To keep running my race. I’m in training. For what? The day. I’m training and disciplining my body for the work of the day- the hours of nurturing and loving our sweet, happy baby, supporting and partnering with my good and kind husband, ordering a home, transitioning from a full-time career to stay at home motherhood. Life. I’m training for life.
And so my body hurts. I move with care because my hips and knees and back and feet and everything are sore. I let the ache remind me that I’m practicing, I’m teaching myself the value of consistency, effort, and diligence. I know that one day the run will feel more intuitive, less laborious. But for now it’s serving me. Exactly as it should..the struggle, the ache, the training.