Switching Gears

For the past month, I have been training for a duathlon  Run-cycle-Run.

pictures cycling bikes tour de france peter sagan

I am not a runner. 

I am not a cyclist. 

I’m just a regular human.

I am someone who likes a challenge always have, always will.

So I dedicated this race to my mum as I was putting my body under subjection as a way of saying in solidarity if I can you can. If I could go above and beyond my comfort then making certain changes against all odds wouldn’t seem as hard. After all,as the African proverb says “if you want to go fast go alone but if you want to go far go together“. I was determined to be there together with my family in the hope that we could accomplish the changes we set out to do, to improve our healthy lifestyle and to be good stewards of the blessing of these bodies given to us. Maybe even a Meek Milly Motivational Mascot ?

So in my attempt to become a duathlete I started training….I named my team #TeamTempo and off I went. Finding my rhythm.

exercise

Did I say I am not a runner? As I panted for breath, with drops of warm sweat dripping down my arms I realised how hard it would be to endure. Each step I took drawing me closer to the expected end but would I ever make it, only when I stopped it was excruciatingly difficult to keep up …PACE. I had to keep going: to, NEVER…LET IT…DROP!!!!

What happens when you push yourself faster than you can handle? Your respiration becomes anaerobic as you grasp for breath, you faint, you maybe quit. You Stop! Holding your knees as you bend over wheezing to catch yourself as countless others pass by, then you begin again with a little less energy, but inhaling steadily.Running at pace then you hit the symbolic wall that braces you from that promised land of mileage you intended to reach as was the hope of all those you ran the race. Little did you know there was a reward for those who were faithful and who would listen to the leading of the coach. If you had paced yourself , though you would have to go all the more slowly you would make it to the distance you needed to go and the wall would vanish from your way. I don’t know about you but I don’t like to walk slowly. I walk fast I like to walk with people who walk fast, if you walk faster than me I’ll be keeping up. It seemed counterintuitive to pace oneself but as I continued making the circuit around the savannah I understood the purpose. I have never in my life run 2 miles without stopping for breath.

The race was not for the swift.

Along the way, I had so much encouragement from family (my number one support system) and my friends who are family too, rooting just for me. There were friends that introduced me to their running club and pushed me further than I ever thought I could run (SIX miles steady)!!!! With the crumbling of the walls I had often faced, I found a new love for running which I now think I will never lose.

{I am now a runner.}

Cycling was getting better as well as a gracious friend offered to lend me their bike for the big day and as I got used to it I felt the speed as I propelled myself forward, slicing through the air like an aerofoil with the lowest drag . Though I felt like I was winning there was something awry in the undertones at play. Pedalling one afternoon the effort put in was not proportional to the output of distance being achieved. As my increasingly heavy legs pushed rapidly one pedal at a time I was labouring to move forward. The sun beat down on me but I was determined to finish the dry run just days before the race on Sunday. Riding close to the edge because I thought I’d be safe there: safe from idiot drivers, safe from speed bumps, just safe!!!

But the risk of living life on the edge is that you might fall off!! 

I hit a patch of the uneven road close to the edge I was hugging and as my already unstable grip on the handle bars tried to correct, I overshot, lost my balance and I catapulted off the road and into the bush at the side. Not knowing what had happened I lay there bewildered for a few moments: incredulous. As if shaken to life I sat up and appraised myself sceptically. My first concern was if the bike was alright: phew!!! Check!!

Up I got as my mother quickly drove up behind me and a fellow rider came to assess the situation: asking if I was alright as I giggled uncontrollably.

It’s really not funny my mum kept repeating. As I nervously giggled and gestured as if I would continue my dry run, she said: “No we need to get you home” Off rides the fellow cyclist as he wished me a speedy recovery and for the grass not to itch me. “Let’s Look at your knee” pulling the ripped tights over it gently.

{Accidents Happen}

She rushed me home and then to the clinic and it turned out I needed stitches.

{There’s a first time for everything}

Some things I wish we never had to experience, but in all of this, I am thankful that it was not worse. I didn’t break anything, I didn’t hit my head, just my chin and thankfully I was wearing a helmet.

God knows why this happened and on the day I had just received my race kit, ecstatic to be a part of my first ever duathlon. What a thing to happen and what timing!! 😦

Having much time to reflect on the happenings of this past month I have seen how there are times in my own life when I may be going through it either in the wrong gear or too close to the edge for comfort. God has shown me at times which gears I needed to switch to ensure that my progression was as a result of his propulsion and not my effort. God has shown me areas in my life where I needed to back away from the edges from which I so easily may fall.

And in those times when I have fallen, he was the one pulling me up and dressing my wounds, stitching me up and setting me right. It was by his strength that I would finish my race and endure till the end. Psalm 118:13-14 I was pushed hard, so that I was falling, but the LORD helped me. The LORD is my strength and my song; he has become my salvation.

Psalm 145:14-16 The LORD helps the fallen and lifts those bent beneath their loads. The eyes of all look to you in hope; you give them their food as they need it. When you open your hand, you satisfy the hunger and thirst of every living thing.

So I won’t be competing in this round of flow energy Sunday but you bet I’ll be back at it as soon as I can.

{Meek Milly’s Mending}


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3 thoughts on “Switching Gears

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