Read before you run – lesson learned

Let’s focus on the positive first of all – two posts in a row on running – I do seem to be getting back in to step (pun intended), and am feeling better for it. However, today was a struggle, and I learned a valuable lesson. But first let me take you to church this morning.

The Gospel reading in the Lectionary (set readings for the Church of England) today was Jesus walking on the water I had the pleasure of hearing two sermons on this passage. The husband spoke at the early service, and I have to admit it was a moment when I felt so proud of him, and our vicar spoke at the later service. In the passage, one of the disciples, Peter, stepped out of the boat and started to walk toward Jesus who just happened to be walking on the water (as you do). There are many messages that could be taken from this reading but one thing that was mentioned today was the idea of ‘look before you leap’ it was suggested that often this is wise advice, however sometimes it can put you off and sometimes we do just need to leap. 

I’m to sure what my tendency is really… I think I do tend to leap, and can make rash decisions, but only with small leaps. With big things I tend to not even look in the first place… but that is another story. Whats this got to do with running?

I have recently been using a different app for running. It is specifically running for weight loss – afterall this is something I need to do. I had got into the habit of just running, and felt I wasn’t necessarily getting any better or necessarily benefitting myself. This, like most running apps, gives direction, which is quite helpful for me. All of the runs have followed the pattern of

  • Warm up walk
  • Run
  • Sprint
  • Walk
  • Run
  • Sprint walk
  • Etc…

The sprints have changed both in length and intensity but the pattern has been the same. So today, I was ready, I clicked on the run, had the opportunity to read the ‘routine’ but I knew it so just pressed start. Warm up walk… Run for 3:30… (hmmmm it’s usually 4 minutes) sprint at 80% for 30 seconds… now Run – RUN WHAT!!!! That’s not the plan, where’s my walk! I was fine sprinting but that was when I knew I was walking! 

It completely threw me off, especially as I’d got to a ‘hill’ which I normally walk up! I have to admit I did walk for a bit but then did the rest of the run and the sprint. The next instruction was to walk – but I didn’t know that was coming up.

It all makes sense, the programme is gradually building me up, probably to the point where it will all be intervals of running and sprinting, but today it was a shock. Completely honestly, it was only by the 3rd circuit that I managed all of the running and sprinting, because by then I knew I would get to walk and my mind was prepared. 

I could have run all of it if I had prepared myself beforehand by reading the programme. It doesn’t just affect my capacity though, it also affects the route. The last few times the programme has taken me to the end of the road so I’ve still had another couple of minutes to walk. Running takes you further than walking therefore I had pretty much reached my door. As the programme develops I am going to have to develop my route.

Deciding to run was my leap in the first place… but then in order for it to be beneficial I had to seek advice. There is definitely a place for leaping without looking, but today and whilst I’m following this programme I will definitely be reading before I run so then I’m not worrying about what I’m doing or what’s coming up, but able to focus on what running does for me… thinking space, God space, to see where He is calling me to (hopefully with the side dish of weight loss as well).

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