Running in the Rain

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"Running in the rain" by Laura Nelson (CatholicMom.com)

Via Pixabay (2013), CC0 Public Domain. Text added by author.

 

Recently I’ve rejoined the world of health and fitness after many years of neglect. Years of a sedentary lifestyle have taken their toll on my mental and physical health and it became obvious that I needed to make a change. So, I’m eating better (not perfectly, but better), I’m taking more time for leisure, and I’m getting more physically active by starting a running program.  

Let’s be clear on something — I’m not a runner. I don’t love running. I have never experienced a “runner’s high.” I’m not in this for the enjoyment factor. The best thing about running for me is the time efficiency and low entry cost. Get some shoes. Go outside. Run. In 20-30 minutes you’ve completed a workout and can resume your busy day knowing that you’re healthier for the effort. So, when I woke up this morning to go for my scheduled run and noticed it was raining lightly, I thought I’d just get a little wet rather than spend the extra time driving to an indoor track.

As I ran it became apparent that I had underestimated the rainfall. Quickly the rain started to saturate my hair and clothes. I began to wonder if I should just use my phone to call my husband to pick me up. But I decided to stick with my plan. After all, I wasn’t worried about messing up my hair or makeup.  he workout clothes I was wearing were made to take that kind of abuse. And I was already mid-run.

As I ran, I started thinking about how this run could be a metaphor for perseverance in the spiritual life. Our call to holiness is one we have to answer regardless of the circumstances. Rain or shine, we have to show up. Persistence is important in our prayer lives, even when the rain keeps us from seeing God’s light in our life. We have to have faith that we will see His light again and that it will warm us to His Word and reveal more of Him to us. After all, God is there both in the rain and in the sunshine.

What about you? Does the rain keep you from “running the good race” at times? (2 Tim 4:7) How do you find the strength to keep running regardless of the spiritual weather?


Copyright 2017 Laura B Nelson

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About Author

Laura B. Nelson is a Catholic wife and mother of three children. She is also a Catholic blogger, author, speaker, teacher and life-long student of the Catholic faith. After receiving her degree in history from the University of Texas at Austin, Laura let her curiosity and enthusiasm take her down many paths including working in the world of finance, full-time motherhood, ministry leader, catechist, music teacher, speaker and author. Laura likes to be busy but she most enjoys spending time with her husband and three children at their home in Grapevine, TX. Visit her blogs at Green for God and Suburban Sainthood.

6 Comments

  1. Wow! I feel like God lead me to open up the blog on my phone and read this remarkably relatable article (and beautifully written). Lately, I have been stopped by the rain, and instead of running forward, I have stopped and gone back home (because it was easier to quit). I am a full-time mom to a beautiful daughter of 2 years and a delightful boy of 5 months. Finding time for God gets harder and harder, and so is making time for excercise. Any recommendations on how I should continue the race?

    • Maggi, first you have to give yourself some slack. You’re in a very busy season of life so forgive yourself first and then move to improve. I guess my second bit of advice is “just keep swimming.” (Ah, the wisdom of Finding Nemo…) In other words, just continue to move forward even if you don’t feel like you’re doing enough. My husband always reminds me that even a bad workout is better than sitting on the couch eating potato chips. A wise man indeed… The same goes for your spiritual life. Don’t expect that you’ll be able to spend an hour in silent prayer each day, go to Adoration at least once a week and attend daily Mass. Your prayer life may involve a morning offering and a tired “Thank you for letting me get through another day!” before bed. But, the more you make those things a habit, the easier they become and then you can stretch and do a little more.

      One month a few years ago, I gave myself a 30 day prayer challenge-Pray a Morning Offering and an Evening Prayer everyday for 30 days. I found two of each type of prayer that I liked and hand wrote them on colored index cards (yellow for morning, blue for evening) then I left them EVERYWHERE. They were in my bathroom, car, kitchen and on my bedside table. I even used them as bookmarks. It helped me form a habit (even if I didn’t continue after the 30 days).

      Keep the faith!

  2. I love this post because I have thought a lot about how running cross country in high school (around 20 years ago now) has influenced me in my spiritual life now. For example, we used to have a strategy of just focusing on getting to a certain milepost when the full distance seemed overwhelming. Then of course as soon as we made it to that milepost we had to set our sights on another one and another one. These days I think about how that same concept helps me to think about taking the next logical step, rather than being too bogged down by the big picture. I also loved your thoughts because from my college days, backpacking on El Camino de Santiago in Spain was a natural extension of lessons learned in cross country and the experience entailed lots and lots of unexpected rain and wind that shredded my poncho. It was interesting how some were able to embrace the experience for what it was and others were frustrated and disappointed that the trip did not live up to how they imagined it was supposed to be. Thanks for sharing your thoughts. And, even though I ran cross country, I was exactly like you as far as not enjoying running 🙂

    • Wow Amanda! I’m so impressed that you stuck with cross country without enjoying it! Talk about perseverance! And I really love the idea of focusing on an attainable goal when the final goal seems overwhelming. Striving for sainthood seems overwhelming but maybe 5-10 minutes of daily prayer is attainable. Thanks so much for sharing your experiences. One of these days, maybe I’ll walk the Camino too.

  3. Michael Carrillo on

    I ran as a youngster and experienced all those things you said you haven’t. I ran a marathon and a couple of half-marathons in my day. But sadly it has been nearly 40 years since I did any serious running…I hope to do the Camino next year and the route and season I’m looking at has lots of rain. I hate being wet. I have thought that I need to train in the wet weather this winter in order to get used to it. I have also thought of running again just to give variety to my workout…hopefully this will help me to persevere in my pilgrimage…what a timely article…thank you

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