runningRunning After a Hiatus

After five short days in Bozeman, we headed north to Alberta. Unfortunately, we started late in the day and only made it to a Calgary Wal Mart parking lot the first night of our adventure. I decided that the time had come to get back in shape—I hadn’t run very much for the past three weeks.

After a good night’s sleep, I got dressed, laced up my running shoes, grabbed my bear spray and cell phone, and headed out the door for a run. “If I’m not back in 30 minutes,” I told Pedro, “call the police.”

I don’t love city running, but I’ll do it if necessary. Running along busy sidewalks and waiting for crosswalk signals takes the fun out of running. As I waited at a stoplight, I surreptitiously checked my elevation app. What I discovered shocked me. Home (Holbrook), is 1800 feet higher in elevation than Calgary!

For my last long run at home, I breezed through ten miles. After just 20 days of mostly jogging and walking at lower elevations, I had lost a lot of conditioning. I had great excuses. I spent time with my daughter Laura each morning for ten days, and her pregnancy prevented her from running much. The muggy California weather sapped my energy.

The truth? I could have gotten up earlier and run further. My lethargy had nothing to do with anyone else. Just me. I had no excuse. My choice had consequences—loss of conditioning and lower motivation to continue running.

Parallel Construction

As I ran back towards the trailer, I thought of how closely the words ‘Calgary’ and ‘Calvary’ resemble each other. A simple substitution of a ‘g’ with a ‘v’ and you get a completely different meaning. I don’t know about you, but whilst running my mind-train tends to jump all over the tracks.

My running life and my spiritual life can easily suffer from the same problem. I try to exercise on a regular basis (at least 10,000 steps a day with at least 15 minutes of cardio). Likewise, I spend time with God every morning.

During those times in my life when I don’t run, walk, or exercise strenuously, my body quickly falls out of shape and it takes extra effort to get moving. My body craves exercise, but if I ignore the cravings long enough, I lose my conditioning and have to work extra hard to get back in shape.

During those times in my life when I let vacation, company, schedule changes, or caregiving duties interfere with my time with God, I quickly fall out of spiritual shape. I act crabby. It takes extra effort to keep a pleasant attitude. Circumstances quickly get me down. My heart craves time with God, but if I ignore the cravings long enough, I lose my focus and have to work extra hard to rebuild that relationship.

If I ignore my heart cravings long enough, I damage my relationship with God. #write31days Click To Tweet

I made it back to the trailer in fewer than 30 minutes, and Pedro had a breakfast of pancakes waiting for me. We left for Banff National Park by nine, and I couldn’t wait to visit one of the places on my Fifty Fun Firsts list. But that’s a story for tomorrow.

Beauty Tip #7: The time you spend with God each day will keep you conditioned to face life with hope.

Q4U: Have you ever noticed a time in your life when you seemed crabby and out of sorts? What caused it?