Running Streak Day 2251 & Marriage

2,251 days.

6 years, 1 month, 27 days.

That is how long I have been running at least one mile a day. Some days those miles are pitifully slow and I can say that about myself. And I am saying it without criticism.

Years ago if I ran a slow, slow mile I would have felt like a failure. I graded myself and felt myself good and worthy if I ran a mile in x pace. And then if I ran x miles a week I was a good runner. And breaking 100 miles a month made me a better runner.

Then life threw a wrench in my path and gave me a good dose of humility and reality.

I am not just a number.

Ladies, we hear that so much. I am not just a number. You are not just a number. Yes, you are more. I am more. We are more.

But there is still a number I track. My running streak. Only because that number is a true pat on the back as that number represents running just a mile, running 26.2 miles, running a 7 minute mile, running a 12 minute mile, running inside, running outside, running in heat, running in rain, running in Hawaii, Texas, California, Chicago. That number reminds me of my faith and that God truly does have my back.

In those 2,251 days I have changed. I have turned from dark, crazy paths of potentially self destructive behavior, low self esteem, a touch of self hate, to loving myself, forgiving myself, and more importantly, accepting myself. I am not perfect. I am flawed. But I am perfectly flawed when I don't let my flaws bring me down. Make me dislike or even hate myself. Make me want to hide and cry as I try to measure up to others and their expectations. Expectations I will never meet.

Ladies, why do we do this to ourselves?

The funny thing is when I came to my computer today to type this post I was going to say, hey, it is day 2,251 of my running streak and for the past few days I have run only a pitifully slow  mile as I was battling a cold. I was going to talk about how we all do get sick at times and to be merciful on our bodies when we are under the weather. To realize that through kind, loving care we can become fully recharged and able to function better. Resisting this process will under hinder recovery and negatively impact your sports performance.

Somehow those 2,251 days became a reflection of life and that makes sense as running daily is my lifestyle choice. Even on sick days I can manage an easy mile. That is really cool.

But those days are also a reflection of more than just running but mindset. A mindset that can be applied to so many areas in our lives. Even relationships.

Ugh. Relationships.

They can have nasty twists and turns. Marriage can be incredibly tough and you may find yourself wondering why your marriage isn't as happy as their marriage. Look, they are looking lovingly into each other's eyes, holding hands, being kind, smiling. They are smiling. Something must be wrong with you and your spouse. You aren't smiling.

But you see, those non smiling days are just like the ugh running days. The pitifully slow days. The torturous miles you never thought you could complete and then, you did. Those ugh days of marriage are part of the essential thread of your marriage. If I pulled out every bad day in my running streak and tossed them out because they sucked and didn't meet my expectations I wouldn't have a streak.

But just because they didn't meet my expectations, those miles weren't worthless. I needed those miles, those days, to keep my streak alive and running. Maybe we need to embrace our yucky relationship days in the same fashion.

What do you think?

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