He fills the longing soul with good things. Ps. 107:9


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Good Things (Part Two) - A Single Step

I have been itching to get back to the blog and re-join the conversation with you all!  But I've been busy doing life around here and the blog had to wait.

I must admit, your kind and understanding responses have helped me deal with that "walking-across-campus-without-your-clothes-on" kind of morning-after feeling.  Naked.  Exposed.  What was I thinking?  What are you thinking?  In the end, this is why I decided to go public anyway.  We are all really in this together.  And that leads me to a couple of disclaimers:

I wanted to clarify right away after my first post that I do not think all naturally skinny people are evil.  Lucky and sickening, maybe.  But still nice people.  And I do not believe you have to have food issues in order to grow in grace. So...now that we got all that cleared up...

...I've been trying to decide what to talk about next.  My head has been spinning with thoughts, and as I mentioned before, it can be a little overwhelming to try to put a journey like this on paper.

But there have been a lot of questions and chatter about exercise and running.  So...let's talk about running!

One of my strongest thoughts at the beginning of this conversation is how dangerous it is to talk about this kind of thing.  We gals have a tendency to be easily squished into one another's molds.  Sometimes we beat ourselves up in unproductive ways.  This is one of the main reasons I've kept my mouth mostly shut about it for 9 months.

For we dare not make ourselves of the number, or compare ourselves with some that commend themselves: but they measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise. 2 Cor. 10:12

We cannot afford to make this mistake - on your end or mine.  So I'm just gonna pray for us right now.

Dear Abba, We praise you and thank you for your gifts and your mercy and your love.  Thank you for the Good Things you have placed in our lives - such abundance.  Thank you for these friends, sisters in You.  We share a common goal, Abba.  We want to be healthy.  We want to live right and strong and holy.  But we need you to strengthen and protect us.  Mostly from ourselves.  We invite you to lead our journey.  To heal our hurts.  To fill our hunger.  To make us strong with You.  And help us to laugh along the way and learn to take things in stride. Oh, how we love and worship you.  All that we are belongs to all of You. Thank you for being Enough.  Amen.

Running just happens to be the thing I stumbled onto that kicked this bod into gear.  But it is not the apex of exercise. And frankly, in some ways it may not be the most practical or reasonable.  What started as a kick in my booty has become a bug that bit me.  A hobby, really.

The whole point is to get moving.  To get healthy.  To take care of our temples.  We all know that.  And of course we notice dress sizes and decreasing rolls and all that good stuff.  But that isn't enough.

So if you read this and have this nagging "I should be running" feeling. Well..maybe, maybe not.  Take a couple bites of chocolate and lie down until the feeling goes away.  Kidding.  But seriously, these ideas are just part of my story, my hobby.  If you're looking for a way to sweat, find the thing you really, really love.  Don't get crushed into a mold that's not you.  Maybe you're a tennis star or a biking beauty or a trampoline jumper or a power walker.  Or maybe you're the type that wants something new every week! 

But...if you've tried the chocolate and the rest and you're still itching to hit the pavement...let's talk, Baby!

I mentioned that I decided to sign up for a 5K at the same time I decided to re-join WW.  I think it was only two weeks till the race!  Obviously, I knew I wasn't going to win a medal or anything.  I hadn't even really started running or training yet (mistake #1)! I was just going to finish it.

Turns out I learned one of the most important running lessons of all during that first race. It's really funny now, but wasn't then, so much.

We were excited.  The buzz at a race is awesome - very motivating.  We stretched a little (no warm up - mistake #2).  We pinned our cool racing bibs on and soaked in the atmosphere.  Then, as everyone moved into the rather crowded starting corral, we found our place towards the front (mistake #3).  Right about the time they announced that some of "Indiana's fastest runners" had a special starting place. We were so green.  We were completely surrounded by serious runners.   (Quit laughing.  You're hurting my feelings.) The race started. We (in an effort to not get trampled and to save a bit of face) went out strong - with the crowd (mistake #4).  That lasted for about, I don't know, maybe 5 minutes.  And I got the worst case of calf pain I've maybe ever had...and the rest is history. Every step hurt.  We walked a lot (because of my pain.) Okay. I think maybe we walked the rest of the way until the end.  But we finished!  And I was proud.  I'd done it.  A big step.  That's what I'd wanted to do - take a step. And I want to just pause right here and say that I have the coolest husband - EVER - for not only walking through this long journey with me but running it with me, too.  (All my love, All my life, Babe)

I had latched onto a quote and lodged deep inside of me.  It now hangs on my wall of inspiration  (When I save my pennies I want to order this all pretty from Wall Words...)

A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. 

I knew the journey I was starting was huge.  Monstrous.  Months and months of hard work.  I knew I'd tried many times before and failed.  But I learned through running that if I just took a step, then kept taking one more step, and one more step, it made a big difference.

Whew.  This is painful. But wonderful.  5K Race #1 - June 19, 2010 
I'm really hoping that my wide-screen monitor is making this picture look worse than it really was.

The kids also ran the kids' fun run at our first 5K.

I needed this picture in this post to remind me that it was worth it and progress came.

Just before I sat down to blog tonight, I finished a great speedwork run of quarter mile repeats from our marathon training plan....those 4 miles put my total logged miles since June 28 at over 561miles.  Over halfway to a thousand! I'm not a speed demon - by far.  But I'm still chugging along, one step at a time.

 I haven't even really gotten to the fun part of the story...but I've gotta get to bed.  My training book says to tell people you need extra sleep when you're training, you know.  (goofy smile)

I have some memorable moments, awesome lessons learned and Q&A's to post later.  And then I wanna maybe talk about food!

This sounds retarded, but I love you guys.  Your stories already have given me a hug in the heart and a shot in the arm.

Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with ENDURANCE the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

 Hebrews 12:1-2
Jody J said...

You're an inspiration! Thanks so much for sharing your story. You are so real and transparent! You rock! ;)

Anonymous said...

Thanks so much for sharing your journey...can't wait to see part 3! You are an inspiration to this old lady to get moving!
Kim Waggoner

Anonymous said...

I have commented on here before, but just wanted to say again that you are truly an inspiration to me....i'm going to copy a statement in another comment....you are very real and that has become so important to me, to know "real" people.....thanks for sharing this part of your life!!...


Leah said...

Sarah, I actually read this with tears in my eyes and at work no less! But, your story is inspiring! Thanks for sharing it! And, I love the quote - A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step! Thanks for that!

Laura said...

I too am very drawn to "real" people. Thanks for being real, Sarah.
You continue to inspire. Thank you.

Making Memories 1999 said...

Thank you for sharing your story, and for reminding me of some great truths (one step, don't compare, etc.). May you be encouraged as you encourage others!

sankey family said...

Sarah, I'm so glad you're sharing your story. I've made a commitment to get moving myself...you're inspiring me to keep going! Love you...

Liz said...

Thank you , thank you, thank you. My little ones are a big reason that I must face my own issues. Thank you for being a REAL friend.

And thank you especially for the pictures :>) and chronicling of mistakes with your first run - that is really good to know.

Juwah said...

I've so enjoyed reading about your journey....very familiar actually. I've managed to maintain with many 10 lbs set backs and triumphs over the years, but I was getting lazy. It's amazing how you can maintain a certain weight, but be so soft your clothes don't fit right. Enter my boys...begging me to join karate. Me? Seriously, I don't have even one athletic bone in my body. But they begged and said things like, "family time" and other unfair words. So I took the plunge and shhh don't tell, but I really like it....it a painful, tortuous sort of way. :) Anyway, thanks for your inspiration to keep up the good fight and be encouraged...3 lbs a month is amazing progress in my book and you've WAY surpassed that...your doing great girl!!

Barb said...

Went to WW last Tuesday evening after reading Part I of your story ...Weighed in this week 6.4 lighter!
Thanks for the inspiration and kick start...Keep sharing!!!

Alanna said...

Sarah, It was so good seeing you and your kiddos last night! And then I came home today and got caught up on your blog. Thank you for sharing and inspiring me!

Sharlyn said...

So good to read your story. Thanks for the encouragement. Keep running with patience!

sarahmfry said...

Thank you all so much for the encouragement!! It has kept me from deleting all this terrifying self-exposure. : )

Super-Yay! I cannot tell you how happy it makes me to think of you stepping off those scales and getting your victory! Thanks for sharing.

I'm a little happy-jealous about your karate! Sounds so fun. The closest I've ever gotten is kickboxing and watching my brother take martial arts. I would so very much LOVE to see you in action. : )I've considered it as a constructive use for Caiden's energy and intensity. Maybe someday...

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