Tuesday, 8 September 2015

Get up, and win the race!

So on Friday I ran my first 5k race for many months, and guess what? – I won!

The conditions were favourable, barely a breath of wind, and at 21m46s I was pleased to bring it home in a respectable time.  

Ok so that 21.46 won’t be getting me any Olympic medals any time soon. And Ok, there were no spectators, and I admit, there weren’t even any other competitors. But did I win? Ohhhhh yeaaaaah.

In fact, I think I won that race at about the 2.5 mile mark. Have you ever noticed that however far you’re running, somewhere about half to two thirds of the way in is often where you win or loose? The honeymoon period and excitement of the start is over, the finish is yet to come into sight, and yet you’re reaching the stage of exhaustion. From 400m to Marathon, it’s always the same! This is where the real test comes. At that point I’m thinking not only ‘I can’t do it’, but also ‘I don’t want to do it!’. Why would I, it hurts! And then some kind of strength of resolve or resource kicks in, and at this point this is where I know I can win, I will keep going and finish this thing. Haven’t put my finger on exactly what this is about yet, but oh, the victory when it’s home is sweet. You know what I’m talking about.

So in running or life, what is winning?

Well, I don’t think it’s about beating other people, competitive though I am. Steve Ovett is reputed to have said “win the race in the slowest time possible.” Is that winning? As someone said to me recently, winning by beating other people just depends on who turns up on the day, and I guess it’s also a matter of the quality of the opposition. I don’t want my capacity to win to be determined by others. Hell no! I want to win the race. In fact, I want to win THE race, and oh my goodness, I will run as if to win THE prize.

Take a look at this well-shared video of Derek Redmond at the 1992 Olympics in Barcelona. You tell me, who really won that race?

I had another win on Friday too.

I’ve been struggling with negative thoughts and depression lately. But with the help of friends and family, with the truth that my resurrected King Jesus has rendered death defeated, I’ve won this race this week too. Quite a week of victories!

A final thought from a poem I heard over 20 years ago. There’s a wonderful line in it that says ‘winning is no more than this, to rise each time you fall’.

I make no apologies that it’s impossible to separate life from running. Get up, and win the race!


  1. Well done you! I'm pleased uve got such good support from friends and family. I haven't won that particular race recently but I love reading about you cos you inspire me and remind me that things do get better and Jesus never fails us or let's us fall further than he can catch us xx

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    2. Watch the video again - I've changed the link to the one I meant in the first place x. It'll be good for you, but have the tissues handy!