Monday, July 7, 2014

First Step Toward My Next (and possibly last) Marathon

Today, I did the first six miles as part of the official training for the Philadelphia marathon this fall.  20 weeks from yesterday.  Six miles at an easy 8:20ish pace.  Was supposed to run within 10 seconds of 8:30.  The first two miles were overlay fast.  First one wanted to make sure not to go too slowly.  Second one was mostly downhill and I got way ahead of myself but pulled back.  Then, the last four were run all within 2 seconds of 8:25 (plus or minus).  So, I once again have reached a point at which I find that I can settle in.  That is good.  Hopefully I'll be able to settle into a 7:20 pace by the time of the Philadelphia marathon.  Today--easy run.  Good start.  Nothing certain given that I am 20 weeks out.  But for day one it is just fine.

That puts me up to 1090 total miles for the year.  That puts me near Nevada, Missouri.  In that city there is a church called St. Mary's.  Once again, it simply fascinates me that so many churches are named to honor the Mother of Jesus.  

Today's observation.  The first day of training is the beginning of an evolution.  An evolution from someone who, no matter how much I love running and no mater how many marathons I have done before (five), I go from being a runner to a marathoner.  Planning to earn that title one more time.  Perhaps for the last time although none of my running friends believe that.

The evolution is not a revolution.  Marathon readiness does not occur all at once.  

What does Mary tell me about evolution?  Mary's trasnformation from a young woman engaged but not married to the Mother of Jesus was a revolution.  She accepted God's presence.  She accepted God's word.  While surprised, she just went with what the angel Gabriel said and followed God's will.

I shared a prayer with a friend that is my expansion of the Serenity Prayer.  The standard Serenity Prayer is "God, grant me the serenity to accept the things that I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference."  As someone who recited the Lord's prayer each weekend, I thought it would be interesting to adapt to a more specifically Christian context.  Not for everyone.  Not everyone is Chrisian.  But it works for me:
grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
the courage to change the things I can,
the faith to follow Thy will in all things,
and the wisdom to sort it all out.
I have blogged about the Serenity Prayer before.  This is a new version for me.  I'll see whehter I still like it in a few months.  But the key is that it forces me not only to ask God for gifts, but also to remind myself to follow His will.  Combining these two things is a powerful guide for me to live my life and evolve over time to being all that I can be and all that God has intended for me to be.  

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