Saturday, January 28, 2012

cross training

It was supposed to be a cross training day today, until I woke up and (somehow) managed to hurt my back within 10 minutes of being awake.  Man, it stinks, getting old...

Anyway, last night, the cat was almost out of the bag.  I didn't think that I'd get out of the movie theater without everyone knowing that I'm training for a half marathon.  Thankfully, the conversation intentionally and quickly changed direction [a couple of times] and I was able to avoid everyone finding out.  Then today, I told my family; figuring that I could use all the prayers I can get, for as long as I can get them.  While it wasn't exactly how I pictured it going (in my head), I have no doubt that they'll pray for me.  :)  For that I feel blessed.  So I think that makes 8 people -- I'm thankful for all 8 who know my (His) plans.

Lastly, I did walk on the treadmill tonight.  It isn't probably the cross training that I needed, but it was the best I could manage tonight.  That's something...

Friday, January 27, 2012


yes, spoiled.  Not just in the 'I live in the USA and have plenty of most anything that I need' kind of spoiled; more of a 'I just tried to do my run outside and realized how much easier it is to do on the treadmill' kind of spoiled.  This could pose a problem, as I'm fairly certain that Borgess Health and their people will not go for me doing the half marathon on my treadmill.

I'm feeling discouraged today, because my run was bad.  Let me clarify that they're never really all that good, but usually I can feel like I've accomplished something by the time I'm finished.  Not today.  I did the 4 1/2 miles, but I walked more of it that I should have... ugh.

I'm still drinking my chocolate milk, because bad or not, I went the distance... but I'm not really feeling like it's a reward today.  Hopefully my next time will be better.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

32 miles in...

After today's efforts, I've done just over 32 miles so far, in training for this event.  YAY!  More importantly, I've gotten the "DONATE" button set up and the link attached to this site, so that you can check out Heartline of Haiti for yourself.  Take a minute and look at their blog; see some of the wonderful ways that they help the people of Haiti.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

An example of why I'm upgrading and becoming involved...

Post taken from Heartline Haiti's blog:

A New Born: From the Dirt Road to the Warm Hands of Heartline

Posted: January 21, 2012
Nothing is boring in Haiti, there is so much to see, so much to experience.  When you live in Haiti you go to bed really tired and when you wake up you have no idea how the day will go.  The best laid plans are foiled at any moment.

Today was one of little plans gone awry for bigger things.  Friday’s are for Family Planning and Bible Study.  Never is it just planning and Bible Study.  A baby is sick, a mother needs to talk.  A teen has a problem.   Pregnancy tests bring joy and sadness.  A disappointing conversation today brought the news that one of our sewing center young ladies is pregnant for the third time.  She is young, she is alone, she gave one child for adoption already and she was just getting on her feet.  A bad choice with long reaching consequences.  Another child to raise on her own.  Thank the Lord He sees beyond our mistakes and makes a way for us.  A precious little person loved and cherished by God.

As we were finishing up our work Cherline, the maternity center housekeeper, came rushing in to tell us a baby was born in the dirt outside by the Harbor House.  Melissa, Dr. Jen and I grabbed gloves and out the gate we ran.  Sure enough there was a squatting mom, a pool of blood, a blue baby lying in the dirt with the cord hanging between mom’s legs.  The placenta had not yet been delivered.

The baby was half in the dirt and half on an old tee shirt and blanket just as dirty as the ground.  Mom was a tiny lady, clearly not sure of what had just happened.  She didn’t know she was in labor.  Melissa and I held up mom and Dr Jen held baby with the cord hanging between us we walked/ran back to the maternity center with blood dripping along behind us.  A comedy to any passersby.

In we rushed and did the things that we do for every woman and baby.  A delivered placenta, vitals taken, baby cleaned and warmed, mom fed and hydrated.  A whirlwind of activity not planned for the day.  A stranger swept off the dirt road and brought into our haven of rest.  Roseline is not in our program, she is not one of our ladies, she is an interruption, a God intended interruption that makes claim that babies shouldn’t be born in the dirt and their moms should be taken care of.

There is something about babies born in humble circumstances.  Babies that go from the warm, protected womb to the cold ground.  Babies that aren’t delivered into warm hands but onto a hard earth with dirty rags.  These babies remind us of Jesus.  They remind us that He interrupts our day with bigger plans.  He bursts onto the scene and if we respond He has something wonderful for us.

Something wonderful did happen today.  We got to minister to a young mom who needed care, a baby who needed a better welcome to life outside the womb.  We got to break the rules and take a “walk in”.   We got to act a little like Jesus today to a baby who was born like He was ~ in humble circumstances.
He’s a God of interruptions, a God who loves the poor, cares for those who have made wrong choices and wants to redeem situations.

Thank you for your support of Heartline that allows us to be here for the ladies and babies of Haiti.
Beth McHoul

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Worship songs and chocolate milk

Have I mentioned how thankful I am for the songs that keep me feeling capable while I'm running (jogging)?  I've been listening to my worship playlist while I've been on the treadmill, and it's been very uplifting.  I love how God speaks through the words of those songs, and usually it's just what I need to hear in that moment.  I tried to listen to one of my regular playlists the other day (pop songs, etc.) and it just didn't give me the motivation that I needed.  I had to switch back.

And chocolate milk -- my after-run treat.  It seems crazy, since I could make chocolate milk anytime I want to, being a grown up.  But I told myself that it would be my treat; my recovery from running (jogging).  One of my friends (who is a legitimate runner) told me a long time ago that chocolate milk is one of the best recovery drinks that you can have after a run.  It's true; it perks me back up and also motivates me to keep going when my legs start getting tired.  Love it!

By the way... as a side note, I ran four miles on Friday -- without walking at all.  :)  Yes, it was an exciting moment.  The last few weeks of this (training for this event) have been a combination of jogging and walking.  But last Friday I wanted to push myself, to see if I could do it without the walking part.  It was such a great feeling of accomplishment, and I was SO thankful that my prayers were being answered, even while I was running (jogging).  What an encouragement to know that when I'm running at higher mileage (which, from all that I can figure, is inevitable) I'll be able to beg God for mercy and strength when I feel like it might just kill me to keep moving.  Very encouraging, indeed...

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Crazy pieces...

So many pieces of this puzzle keep falling into place.  It was last February when I first started feeling like I was supposed to be running, it was August when I thought I would be finished, after completing that 5K to raise awareness about human trafficking.  It was a seemingly innocent event plan that brough me to a chapter in the Bible -- Isaiah 58.

We have been planning a showing of a film called "58" at church, to bring awareness to global poverty and injustice, so I have been thinking a lot about that particular chapter.  It became crystal clear to me (like, scarily clear, to the point that I couldn't help but be overwhelmed with emotion) as I watched the film that it is exactly why this all started, almost a year ago.  I have to do for a few what I wish that I could do for the masses.  It's very crazy to me, to realize that God has had THIS particular plan in motion for almost a year now, and that He's using me to do it... ME!  Someone who would NEVER choose to run -- for any reason.  Someone who doesn't have confidence enough in her physical abilities to ever actually sign up for an event of this magnitude.  Someone for whom each and every step would be a challenge.  THIS is how I will step outside of my comfort zone to help someone else.

I have always read and heard about how God uses "regular people" to do great things, whether in the Bible or in stories that I hear every now and then on the news.  Could I be one of those people?  Someone who will do something great, for someone I don't even know?  I suddenly feel like this purpose will give me strength that I wasn't even aware that I had.  I can't wait to find out.

Monday, January 9, 2012

286 miles

My training schedule has me going 286 miles. Currently, as I have only completed 8 of those miles, I am wondering how this is going to happen. But I'm also dreaming about how I will feel as those miles pass (besides sore, tired, crabby, etc.) We're currently in a series at church, called 'Upgrade.' It focuses on upgrading your life, according to what God has for you, versus staying content with what's convenient or what's comfortable. As I sat in the service yesterday, I couldn't help but think about this challenge. I couldn't help but think about the mamas and the babies whose lives will (hopefully) be changed because of my commitment to this seemingly impossible goal. I do pray that God will use this as an opportunity in many ways; obviously I can use the physical aspect of it, and most definitely the money that will go to Heartline will enable babies to be born in a clean, safe environment.

I still have only told a couple of people about this challenge. While I'm excited to tell people, I'm still so nervous about what everyone will expect. Not that it really matters, because I'm not doing it for them -- I'm doing it because I've been unable to shake the whispers that have been stirring in me for months. I'm doing it because I think that it's an opportunity to upgrade my life... I hope so.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

There's more to come...

Yes, obviously there's more running (jogging) to come, but there's more to this whole thing than just the running (jogging).

You see, this has been a long time coming. God started working in my heart several months ago, with regard to this effort. I was successful in ignoring it for a while; after all, why would I want to respond to whispers about running? Then, I thought "Okay God, I'll try it... I'll try to run," figuring that it would be a short-lived effort and then be done. Figuring that if I had tried to do what God was putting on my heart, that would be enough. I ran through the summer and completed a 5K in August. Finally, I could say that I did it, and (praise the Lord) be finished with running. Still, no; God wasn't finished with this whisper.

I only confided this to a couple of people, because it seemed somewhat crazy that God was whispering to me about running. Really, God? Running? I thought that He must have had me confused with my sister (who is actually a great runner), but of course, He didn't. So... I kept going out and doing it. It was miserable and it made me hurt -- a lot. Certainly God would give me a reprieve, after trying so hard for several months. Nope, still no ceasing with the whisper.

Guess what? He had other plans for me. I've finally realized that this whole thing was leading me to run in order to help others. What the...?? I know, it sounds kind of crazy. But it actually makes perfect sense (as God has a tendency of doing). I have been prompted to run a half marathon as a fundraiser for a group in Haiti. This organization has a variety of ways that they help Haitians, and I was introduced to them a couple of years ago when some friends of my sister's trained and completed a half marathon to raise money for them. Heartline of Haiti; mamas and babies -- that is why I will do this. Hopefully God will let me off the hook after May 6. Maybe He will give me another whisper; one that isn't so freaking painful. :)

Keep praying...

Friday, January 6, 2012

What's a little blood, sweat and tears, anyway?

NOW I've done it. Now it's not just talk... it can't be. Now I have to actually DO something. And that something? It's RUN! What was I thinking?

I signed up to do a half marathon. And before you assume that Stephanie has hijacked this blog, claiming to be me, let me assure you... it's Laura. Crazy, chubby, sassy Laura.  Between whispers, promptings, and way too many coincidences to actually be coincidences, I've been called to action.

please be praying...