Thursday, September 13, 2018

Ironman Diary - Days 24-25

Storms about and the humidity has been awful  Got most of the training in, and today did an outside bike ride - first in over a month.  Did it feel good or what?   Storms are rumbling in my ears as I write this, and I want another outside ride.  Somehow, outside rides require more of me and  give more to me than indoor trainer rides.  There was a feeling of freedom as I stepped away from the robotic training of indoor rides. Oh sure, I will do lots more of those indoor rides before this is over, but I can stannd it better because I know what is out there if I endure the hum-drum, build the fitness, and take it out to try out on the hills and wind.

It is like faith, I suppose.  You can pray.  You can read devotionals. You can read the Bible but to really get to know God - I have found - you have to take it outdoors and  share it  by your example out on the roads of life.

Next week, no storms are forecast, and I look forward to taking it on the road in Jesus Name.

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Ironman Diary - Days 22-23

Rainy, stormy weather and training is hard to get in on my slippery trails. But everyone training for a big event has to overcome their own slippery trails to get to the starting line.  Hurricanes may hit some areas soon and they have their slippery trails to endure which are much more serious than anything I  am trying to endure. 

So today, I  pray for the people in the areas that might be challenged by hurricanes and storms in the next week  or so.  And who knows that it may be this area; it might be us that gets hit by one or more of these.  It is good to know that hope; that eternal Hope that sustains us in all weathers. 

Sunday, September 9, 2018

Ironman Diary - Day 21

Three weeks into this and already the journey has been a tug-of-war.  It is amazing how I don't think I am doing good but when I look back, I see that I have done pretty good for an older guy.   There is not much to compare myself against.   It is  hard to know just how good I am doing because folks my age don't usually do this kind of thing. I think I am must not be a friendly person anymore because I don't have as many friends and family.   Truth is:  most of them are dead or they have succumbed to the expectations of conventional wisdom and have grown more mature by the time they reach my age.

But tonight I feel good about my consistency and am grateful to God for the health, the opportunity, and the passion to do this.  I would suppose that as long as I am truly grateful, growing mature isn't yet required. 

I ran in a pouring rain today and reveled in it.  Except for the slippery footing in the woods on the trail, it was one of the best runs this year.  I think for most of us life is just too tame most of the time and that deep inside there is the younger you wanting to get out to experience something to be grateful for; perhas a run in the rain?

Saturday, September 8, 2018

Ironman Diary - Days 19-20

Yesterday I used a heart rate monitor on my run.  After starting it was apparent, I was in the right place. Usually, I have trouble getting my heart rate over a 100, but not today.  I was breathing harder, running faster, and holding 120 plus. Yes ! What encouragement!  I felt like a young man again being able to have a normal heart rate for this.   Not much can take the place of a day when you can feel young again.  At this age, I should pursue days like that.  Like God told Joshua in the book of the same name: (paraphrase)  "I know you are old and stricken in years, but I still have work for you to do.  You ain't through till I say you are."  Yeah, that seems the only reasonable outlook to aging up in a tough sport.

Today, I ate too much cereal that bloated my stomach and I had a long run to do.  Nutrition is going to be my downfall if I don't get on top of this.  But, it was good training, that is, to keep going on a sour stomach and in the heat, yes, great training for endurance  This is not called endurance sports for nothing.  And today, I endured and ran in horrid humidity for an hour and 50 minutes.   Does it seem obvious I am happy, very happy about this day?  Happy? Yes:   blessed? Most assuredly. 

Friday, September 7, 2018

Ironman Diary - Days 17-18

And the lack of motivation goes on and I am doing a little downtime with minimal training.  It's all good. As the scriptures says "All things work together for those that love the Lord and are called according to His purpose." (Romans 8:28)  Yeah, called according to His purpose; the takeaway for me today:   keep moving forward; don't try to tally the score.  Keep moving forward in the faith that the road is the right one and the destination is in God's hands.

Who knows but the journey is destination and that experience has truths which can best be illuminated by the day to day striving against what, right now I would say, are pretty long odds. Perhaps the journey is meant also for as few as just one other person, a testimony of sorts to bring insight and inspiration?  I don't know and probably won't ever know why I am doing this.  It is only important that I do; to be obedient.  Like a flower trying to bud, the bloom will come in due time. Trust and obey.  Obedience: perhaps that could be the lesson of these miles of the Journey.

Faith to believe - Courage to obey - Patience to wait

Wednesday, September 5, 2018

Ironman Diary - Days 15-16

This is the first time that I am having motivation issues on this journey. Just as the weather is on the verge of being good for training; just when I may not be running or biking in 90-100 degree weather, my "want-to" wants to go home and not play anymore.  Not sure why that is. I feel good enough. I have no major injuries or regular pains.  I just am running out of go juice.

Life is like that sometimes; the spark goes out and the purpose you could see vividly, now is quite dim and indistinct.  I don't know what to blame it on.  If this were a new issue, I would say that I pretty much train in the dark; that is, rah-rah support is minimal.  Seldom does anyone ask me about my training.   Everyone has their own stuff, their own doings.  I get that. And, like I have written before, I have been training for ironman for about 6-7 years now.  This qualifies for top ranking in the "ho-hum, I'm nodding off" department for most.  I get that too.   I have gotten over all that before and was doing well putting all that aside this time. But now I just am having trouble pulling my self up. 

There really is not a problem to get a handle on to fix.  I have gotten my workouts done the last couple days:  a couple good bike trainer rides, a couple good runs;  a good swim non-stop for about half the ironman swim distance.  So what is wrong? 

My last resort is to get away for 2-3 days, train minimally and do some  things different than train, like do the tractor work I have been putting off to improve the trails in the woods; go fishing, ready my fall garden or read without interruption.   I have read at least a chapter a day of the Bible since starting this program but maybe I could read more?  Maybe I could pray more and longer in quiet places to get the strength and will to go on, or the courage to quit this altogther if God says "enough."

Monday, September 3, 2018

Ironman Diary - Day 14

Yesterday was a good training day as well. Of course, I am not where I want to be, but I am pointed to and moving in that direction.  So it is, in life and in my trust in God;  I am not where I want to be but I am pointed in the the right direction.   My faith walk is so much like training and vice-versa. I have times of motivation, purpose and faith, and times of utter dejection and a sense of desperation   Sometimes faith waivers and I fear lifes's finish line.  Sometimes my faith waivers ad I fear I will not be ready for Ironman Texas.  But when the temptation is over and the devil leaves "for a season" I see know again God's got this in both cases.  Each renewal and each "knowing" builds faith for the future and in both cases I get more ready for the events finish.

Of course now, at this point, I am not ready, but like in my faith walk, I am on the right track, stumbling, falling, succeeding and failing at times, but in the end God's got my finish line. So, I keep following my training plan and the plan God has for me, and keep moving in the direction to which I have been called.