Posted in Family, Faith and Fitness

Running Life’s PR

40 Reflections – #5:  40 days of raw recollections during the Lenten Season

PR is a running reference standing for personal record. In short, it is your own best performance in a given race. A PR serves as an internal motivator for the runner, pushing them toward increased efficiency and progress. Personally, my race PR peaked years ago. Today, as my finish times wax, my goal is to simply complete any given race without having to scour the course for a port-a-potty prior to the finish.

The beauty of the PR is the concept of beating your own time. Showing improvement, becoming better, faster, stronger. Before a race, I visualize myself running every mile with speedy, long, smooth, pain-free strides. Limping away from the crowd at the finish, I’m proud of myself, grateful its over, and pleased to have a conversation starter for the next week, “So, I ran a 10K…”.

The PR concept applies directly to our perceived self-worth.

As runners, we are natural competitors, with ourselves, and amid our fellow athletes.  It’s always nice to know you ran a little faster than someone, as it gives you an extra zip in your stride. However, it can lead to the comparison and justification craze. This is the moment when you claim the only reason someone was faster than you, was because they were much younger, had fancier running shoes, or because ALL THEY DO is train.

As humans, we ping pong our minds trying to craft our passion in life.

On that journey, it is natural to compare how our plodding down life’s paths stacks up against the steps taken by our peers. Will they have a greater impact on the world? Are they healthier? Wealthier? Does all their stuff equate to happier days? Why does their PR seem so much better than our own?

There lies the challenge. Life’s PR doesn’t have a number. Our journey is not set up on a digital timer where we sprint to the finish knowing we’ll have another chance to run the same race. Time only goes one way; we get one shot at life. It’s up to us to leave our mark, perfect our personal narrative, pray more, compare less, and ultimately serve others.

Run on, moms and friends.

Dig Deep: Write down your goal time for your next race on the back of your race number and focus on pace throughout the run.

Lenten Prayer: “But as for that day or hour, no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.”  Mark 13:32


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