Well, it wasn’t pretty…

…but I did it. The Akron Marathon was last Saturday.

Akron MarathonI trained.

I entered.

I ran 15 very enjoyable miles. With a couple stranger-friends. In the rain. It was a treat!

I strained the Iliotibial Band in my left leg. (IT Band Syndrome=Ouch. Seriously.)

I suffered.

I limped.

Occasionally, I jogged.

I whimpered a little bit. Actually, I whimpered a lot.

I got frustrated.

I prayed, though not as often as I got frustrated, I’m afraid.

I limped and whimpered some more.

Eventually, I finished.

My finish time was 5:22…exactly 3 hours more than the winner and almost an hour more than I had hoped, which was kind of disappointing. I came in 954th place, behind 690 men and 263 women.

Initially, my girls weren’t impressed. Their comments when I arrived home went like this:

“Did you win?” :)


“Did you come in second?” :)

Realizing that this could take a while, I told them that I probably came in about 500th. They were a bit crestfallen, but they’re recovering. I haven’t yet determined how to tell them that I was off by 454 places. But I finished. And I enjoyed it. And I learned a lot. And I was humbled by the kindness of literally hundreds of people who helped and encouraged a perfect stranger though they had nothing to gain. Amazing.

I’d like to do it again. But first, I’d like to be able to walk up the stairs in a reasonably normal manner. And at this point, the stairs look like a marathon.


20 Responses

  1. so… I wondered what was going on. Do you really believe this verse or not?

    1 Timothy 4:8 for bodily discipline is only of little profit …

    Of course, the way I live, I live like I believe it says “of NO profit” …

    So I guess I shouldn’t give you too hard of a time!

    At least you can still type, right?

    Don Johnson
    Jer 33.3

  2. Chris,

    You know what I was doing all of those very early mornings that you were running and training? I was sleeping.

    You know what I was doing when you were eating healthfully while you were in training? I was eating cheeseburgers, cheesesteaks,and pizza.

    You know what I was doing last Saturday while you were running (limping, whimpering) for over 5 hours? I was reading while I watched football and drank root beer.

    And I am the one who can walk up the stairs tonight with no pain. I may be a little out of shape, but I am wise.

  3. By the way, congrats on running fifteen miles. I get tired sometimes driving fifteen miles. Give me a call sometime. We’ll talk church-planting.

  4. Chris, you have my respect and envy. 26.2 You are da’ MAN!

  5. The older I get, walking from my bed to the bathroom is a marathon. Wow! 26+ miles…I’ve owned cars that didn’t make it that far! Congrats!…Now we know better how to pray for you :)

  6. Now that you have figured out the syndrome, do you “overpronate, have leg length discrepancies, or are bow-legged?”

    Seriously, that’s quite an accomplishment. My longest recent distance was five miles. I walked home from church (w/ McKnight and Daniel Defoe). It took me 1:45! That’s long enough for me.

  7. BTW, I found your stats by typing in your name here.

  8. Congrats Chris! You are an inspiration. What possessed you to even try to run a marathon? What a noble goal to accomplish; I hope you recover quickly. I don’t know which would hurt worse-the injury or the admission that you were 954th. I hope you recover from both. :)

  9. Of course, the admission that hurts much worse than yours is that I can hardly jog around the block.

  10. Well, my little brother Chris, after all of the comments of your friends and co-workers there is very little left to say. I don’t think that you will live longer than your fat freind who sits on the couch reading while watching footbal. I doubt that you will get to the bathroom any easier than your other friend who finds that challenging, as we all do at times. But you planned for something, prepared for it (you know now how to better prepare for next time) and you went beyond your comfort zone to try something that looks overwhelming. I offer my sincerest congratulations. You were not disqualified and you didn’t give up. Bravo. I hope we get to run together next year while I am on furlough. Please patch up any egos that I might have wounded, or feelings that I might have tread upon. One of my college professors used to say “Aim for nothing, and you hit it every time.” By the way, I will not think any less of you if you decide to never run another marathon. Just glad to see you worked so hard at something that you wanted to accomplish. Have a great trip to Greece.

  11. Dan,

    Whoa, whoa, whoa, there big fella. Who said I was fat? You inferred that from what I wrote? Let us all hope that you exegete the Scriptures better than you did my post. :)

    Kevin Plew, is that really you? Now there is a name that I haven’t seen since my last demerit slip in college. Where are you and what are you doing these days?

    Andrew Henderson

  12. Yes, Andrew, it is me. I am in Bloomington, Illinois serving with a mutual friend Mark Bouslog. I don’t want to take up this site with idle chit-chat, but feel free to send me an email sometime. Good to hear from you Andrew.

  13. Sorry, Andrew. My email is pastorplew@mailcan.com.

  14. Hey, fellas. Thanks for chiming in. Your congratulations were kind. Your sarcasm was…um…expected. :) You guys are too funny.

    Dan, that’s about as nice as you’ve ever been to me. Wow. Joking aside, it is a pretty neat thing to accomplish something that you’ve aimed at for a while. Proverbs 13:19a has come to mind a few times.

    This thread (and my comment following the post) from June ’05 made me smile. Progress!

    BTW, Dan, Jeff & I are planning on the 3 of us running in DC while you’re home. That would be something, eh?! Love you, man.

  15. Congrats, Chris! (I had to be eating a Wendy’s Frosty when I read this…now I feel guilt…)

  16. Andrew,
    I am sorry to have read into your message more than was intended. Please explain this word “exegete”. I guess that you didn’t realize that I am only a “moochinary” and unable to do much with quotations from Blogland or Scriptures.
    I must admit, though that there have been a few times that my understanding of a passage in English is much different from what I encounter in Portuguese. It is good to look into this before preaching in another language, I can assure you.

  17. I have but one thing to say to Don about his lack (and my lack) of physical excercise:


    BTW, my wife and I went to Kentucky for our vacation, and we tried “Kentucky Hot Brown” (http://www.foodreference.com/html/fkentuckyhotbrown.html.) It’s turkey on toast, cover with a cheesy gravy poured over the whole thing, then 2 strips of bacon placed on top, finally covered with Parmesan cheese, then placed in a toaster oven to make it hot! The cheesy gravy sounds like poutine! It was a heart attack on a plate! See, Chris, eating something like that IS a marathon!

  18. Hey, Doug, I think you need to go visit Chris and bring him some Starbucks. He has gone silent on us…

    Don Johnson
    Jer 33.3

  19. Sweeeeeeeeeeet. You were only limping. Man, I was crawling, bro. Pain galore. Now, you are truly among the band of brothers.

    Hey, what about joining me for http://www.lotojaclassic.com? It is the longest of its kind in America friend. And I am going to have all the support crew vans of our band loaded with cases containing John’s Gospel.

    Take care friend. Soak in the jacuzzi.

  20. […] Lance finished a marathon. I’ve finished a marathon. […]

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