Running! Funny thing is running is not my thing!  But I have to do it,  it’s part of life. Whether running physically or mentally, life is a race of its own! This time I actually ran, I mean physically running in a race.  Have you heard of the Color Run?  It’s a fun run with lots of paint.  Yes, I did get covered head to toe in paint. While I was running I heard several tapes playing in my mind.  I didn’t have any headphones on, so I had my own noise from my thoughts.  Do you know the tapes I’m talking about?  The voices that talk to you, the voices that you hear in your head?  Yeah those voices, well today I listened to the tapes that were playing, and what was actually being said to me.  Those various reoccurring thoughts.  The one’s that say, “Woo hoo! This is amazing! Go Get em! You got this! You can do anything! and then there is the flip side.”

Here is what I learned!

Life is a race, what tapes are you playing in your head?

It was hot, honestly not sure how hot, maybe upper 80’s and sunny, but when you run in the sun, wow does it feel hotter! It’s amazing what starts out in the mind, the positive vibes, positive thoughts, can quickly turn south when faced with hardships.  Today my goal was to not stop running.  Absolutely no walking for 3.11 miles, which is a 5k.  I paced myself well and I believed in my heart that I could do it.  Sadly, I trained poorly for this race, as life got very busy.  But I didn’t let that be my excuse to not participate or have the opportunity to challenge myself.  I said, “Sarah, you can do this! No matter what, get out there and crush it.”

As the race began, it felt easy, like I could run a thousand miles. As the race went on, I heard another racer shout to his young daughter, “you can do it honey, we are at 1.31 miles, almost half way.”  I immediately heard the tape in my mind, “Oh my gosh, I’m not even half way yet.  Oh no this is terrible, It’s hot, I’m tired.  I just want this to be over.”  Well I had to decide then and there what tape to listen to?  That tape that said this is too hard?  Or say enough is enough!  I instantly said, “Stop it Sarah!  You are almost half way there, at half way, you get a little sip of water to finish strong.  Whatever you do, don’t stop running!  Keep going, finish strong!”

Hit the Mute Button On negative thoughts!

I worked on that conversation to keep running and finish strong the rest of the race.  I focused on what I needed to hear and shut the voice up that needed to be muted.  It was not an easy task.  And when we take on hard things, it’s sometimes hard to hit the mute button on negative thoughts. No matter whether it is with the choices you put in your mouth, the exercise you need to participate in, the media and music you filter through your mind.  It’s important to be on guard. What can you do?

 5 application steps you can take to help you be the best you!

  1. Filter your thoughts- Don’t allow negative self-talk.
  2. Hang out with people who build you up and encourage you – find friends that make you want to improve yourself.
  3. Do challenging things with others, those who inspire you to be a better person.
  4. Practice playing the positive tapes, you know the “hard thing” is coming, so prepare for it. Even when life is hard, there is something positive to be seen. Look for it!
  5. No matter what, decide to persevere and finish strong!

In it to win it!

When I saw the end of the race, I didn’t peter out and slow down, it was time to be in it to win it!  What was I winning? My confidence!  That I can complete hard things!  And I know you can too!  Why do I know this? Because if I can, you can!  It’s the truth!  I believe in you! Now I need you to believe in you!

My favorite scripture for running a race, and let’s face it, life is a race and not just any race, it’s a marathon! Everyday you are in training.  Everyday, you can choose to do it better and become better.  “Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.” Hebrews 12:1

Don’t just run the race, run with perseverance!

Notice we aren’t just to run the race?  We are to run it with perseverance. Do you know what perseverance is? “Persistence in doing something despite difficulty or delay in achieving success.” (Oxford Dictionary) Despite difficulty or delay!  This is powerful! It means you pick yourself back up and keep going!  No matter what is thrown at you. No matter what you put in your mind and heart yesterday. No matter what you put in your mouth 5 minutes ago.  No matter what struggle you feel weighed down with, you pick your pieces back up, never give up!  Never quit!  It’s time to break the chains of bondage and run towards freedom!

 Let’s cross this finish line strong!

You and me together! Let’s be victorious!  As you weave in and out of the obstacles, as you dodge the unforeseen, keep your eyes focused on your goals and you will achieve. What do you need to give priority to right now?  Is it the foods you fuel your body with?  Is it the thoughts that run across your mind? Do you need to turn on the filter? Is it the exercise you need to incorporate?  Is it budgeting your time to have better use of your time? Do you need to find a new friend that supports you? Inspires you? Challenges you? What is the one thing you could do right now? What is the one thing you could do today that would help you achieve your best you?  Whatever that thing is for you? The thing gnawing at you, you know that thing that just won’t go away?  That’s the challenge you need to pick up and say, “enough is enough, I’ve got this!”

Now go out there and crush it! You are worth it! Be the best you! There’s no one else that can do it!




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