Saturday, April 26, 2014

Hard Charge

Today I ran the Hard Charge at Park City. It was a 4.2 mile run with 20 obstacles. You can see pictures of them here.

It was crazy and intense and FUN! There were 5 of us from my workout group, Marquis, Chris, Steve, Leesa, Sheila and I. I was severely under trained. The first four months of this year have been brutal. I've had plantar fasciitis (again), worked 60+ hours per week and been severely stressed. The not working out but continuing to eat like I am has not been good to me. I'm working to correct that.

But about the race...

There was crawling through mud pits a good 20 yards long under barbed wire fence without the barbed wire. This was a foot of water on top of mud. It was grueling. Mud up to your elbows, people in front of you kicking it up in your face, yep, it was awesome. It is called a mud run for a reason.

I'm going to just share a few of the obstacles and how I did, because it was pretty comical. There is one that is 5 hills of dirt that you climb over to climb down the other side into waist deep water with calf deep mud under it. I got to the top of the second hill and slipped. Hoping to land on my butt and slide down the other side. Unfortunately the way things work for me, I slide back down the side I just climbed up, taking Marquis back down with me. And go completely under water. I did that twice. From that point on I climbed up, slid down on my butt and dog paddled across the water so I didn't have to worry about losing my shoes in the mud.

There was a water crossing that I swam across. There were cars to climb over. There were 25 pound gas cans to carry. There were sand bags to carry. There were culverts to crawl through, sewer tunnels to crawl through, muddy creek beds to run through. Sand pits to army crawl across with fencing over your back. Muddy tunnels to crawl through.

There were wooden barricades to jump over. Over waist high on me. I was running with Steve and he puts his hand on the top and hurdles over. I put my hand on the top, hoist myself up to my waist on it, slide my legs over and then drop on the other side. I lost my bib doing this. Completely ripped off my shirt. But I did it. The next time we hit barricades, they were taller than my head. Chris and Marquis and Steve put their hands together to make steps for us to get high enough to get over. I have bruises on my palms and my abdomen. But I did it, and felt extremely proud of myself.

Then there was the wooden ladders to climb up to get to the top of a I don't know what to call it, so you could rappel down the other side. This was my other "mishap". I climbed to the top no problem. Grabbed the rope swung down and the my hand slid all the way down the rope, I dropped into about 3.5 feet of muddy water and went completely under AGAIN. Also felt like I might have ripped two finger nails off my left hand.

Other than this, I was okay. I couldn't get over the last wall, I couldn't even jump high enough to grab the top, so I went around. There was also one that you swung across like monkey bars, but the pipes were too big for my hands to grip and the fall was too far to take the chance on. I'm kind of klutz. I also couldn't complete the last one, it was a rock wall, but you had to get up the first 8 feet or so with very few footholds. I didn't have the strength in my hands to pull myself up, and didn't have the patience to wait for help.

I am bruised from palm to armpit on my right arm, and my knees from crawling are beat up, scratched and bruised. My whole left leg from the knee down is turning purple.

And I have to say I loved every hard, exhausting, painful moment of this race. I will be doing more mud runs, and I will be back next year to do this one again. I had mud in my hair, in my bra, and caked to my face. I had muddy grass in my pants and stuck to my hair, I had to brush my teeth three times to get the grit out. My toe nails still have some dirt caked in I couldn't get out with a brush. I'm hoping the second (third, if you count the one with the hose outside before I came in the house) shower of the day will get that completely off before I get a pedicure tomorrow.

Here we are, the friend I can always count on to support me in my crazy adventures and include me in hers. Nothing is too ridiculous to try, if we go together. And usually bring Steve. We'll have years of fun reliving this. Here's our "selfie" in the bathroom at McDonald's where we stopped for lunch (and diet coke) after. We were so hungry. We got a lot of attention inside the restaurant, and then we sat outside on the pavement to eat.

Here is the whole groups, Sheila, me, Steve, Marquis, Leesa and Chris post race, with the "earned" sign. And we did earn this.

Did I mention that I'm going to do this again? Because I am!

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Radical Christianity

Nate was telling me that during the Olympics that one of the guys he's works with (from Pakistan) tells him this story:

A group of radical Christians hi-jacked an airplane of Muslims in Sochi. Because it was Christians kidnapping Muslims, it wasn't getting any press. He only knew cause his relatives in Bangladesh told him.

He asked Nate what he thought of that. I don't know how Nate answered with a straight face.

But I did think about radical Christianity.

Radical Christians picket soldiers funerals.
Radical Christians sit down in the drive way at abortion clinics.
Radical Christians shoot abortion doctors while they worship in their church on Sunday morning.
Radical Christians refuse to eat at restaurants that support gay marriage.

The first radical Christian was nailed to a cross for loving radically, forgiving radically, healing radically.

His followers were the next radical Christians, sharing this Jesus they knew and loved and they were all martyred for their beliefs.

Then we have the martyrs that were thrown to the lions, and even modern day martyrs around the world that are killed for their radical love for Christ.

Someone this week called Mother Theresa "a great human being". And she was. I would say however, that she was a radical Christian.

I had a friend this week tell me she wished she had more so she could give more. She is a radical Christian.

The world needs more radical Christians. But not the ones hi-jacking airplanes, lol.

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Holy Easter

I'm feeling pretty lazy as I'm sitting on the couch watching TV and typing this. Even more so because Steve is outside doing yard work. And he just killed a 2 foot long garter snake. Manly man.

I'm pretty tired. I got up this morning to go workout, laid back down, got up, laid back down and told Steve I wasn't going, got back up and got dressed and went. It was a tough work out. Pushing sleds, hang cleans, pulling sleds with bands, 15 minutes of hard core abs.

I love the Easter holiday. Obviously, as a Christian, loving holy week and Easter weekend makes since. It's also the weekend I experienced an answer to prayer, and the coinciding with Easter weekend makes it special.

I read a comment by a preacher earlier today, Sammy Rhodes "Holy Saturday the best reminders that the quietness of God does not equal the absence of God".

Following on the comment that Easter is a reminder of a huge answered prayer, this is a reminder that just because he doesn't answer, just because he's quiet, doesn't mean he's not there.

Opposites, but yet both need to be accepted and believed

Friday, April 18, 2014

Are we really blessed?

How often I see someone post on facebook and say "feeling blessed". Most recently, it was over a woman who was ill and her family took care of her, and a young woman who got to spend a couple hours with her children that she gave up.

Bless·ed adjective \ˈble-səd\
having a sacred nature : connected with God:
very welcome, pleasant, or appreciated
from Meriam Webster

Both of these situations gave me pause. They do fit the definition. But I feel the word blessed is over used, much like amazing, epic, officially, and many others.

Today I can say I'm blessed. It's Good Friday. The day Jesus died for my sins. The day he suffered and paid the penalty for me, I don't have to pay for my own. The day my eternity was settled, as long as I accept it. Because of this, I am connected with God. His Holy Spirit lives in me, and because of that, and only because of that, I have a sacred nature.

Jesus only crime, loving people? His guilt, none! But he carried mine. His pain? IMMENSE, INTENSE and it was for me.

Do I deserve this love? Absolutely not. But it's mine, and I'm so grateful and yes, today, I am blessed.

Isaiah 53:5 "But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed."

I hope this season of holy days that you know him That this peace is yours. That this healing is yours.

I have both, peace and healing. Not easy to come by. Not easy to live in and hold on to in this crazy life we have. All it's ups and downs. All the sin, mine and others around me that has an impact. But this Jesus? He paid for your sins and "their" sins as well, so forgiveness this time of year is easy to offer.

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Believing God

Is there something in your life you need to believe God for?

A miracle in some area?

Or maybe not a miracle, but a change?

Do you ever feel like your prayers are selfish?

You are praying for good things, but your prayers only affect you. You don't even ask for anyone to pray for you because you don't want to waste their time?

I'm so thankful that we have a God that we matter too. From the smallest things to the largest, he cares.

He listens. He hears.

He may not answer every time with what you want, but just knowing he listened and he loves me is the biggest comfort.

Saturday, April 5, 2014