Creeping Glory

For the seven of you out there who enjoy reading my running posts, I completed my online challenge yesterday to run 150 miles in the month of January. A day early no less but nobody likes a show off so I won’t brag about that. Oh hang on I just have. Anyways. It was an online challenge so all I have to do now is e-mail the organisers a screen shot from my Garmin app confirming the mileage and they will post me out a medal and compression top. To the victor the spoils. I had to pay £14.99 for this privilege (plus postage and packaging) but let’s not deflect from my glorious achievement here.

I’ll post a photo of them when they arrive. A photo minus me because I’m not a big fan of having my photograph taken. Plus those of a sensitive nature, with medical conditions, or eating might struggle with the sight of your truly in a compression top. It’s not a pretty sight let me assure you. I have battled low self esteem all my life and a desperate need for attention and acceptance. This, in turn, has gotten me into all sorts of trouble. I am a terrible judge of character and throughout my life have effortlessly fallen into the wrong company at the drop of a hat. In fact forget the hat, I’ll just do it anyway.

Running and writing used to be just two more tools I used to grasp the spotlight. It was all about me. The problem with being in the spotlight, though, is that you are exposed and blinded. Disoriented and unaware of what is going on around you. And in my case, inside of me. I was becoming a vain, selfish and thoroughly unlikeable person. Others could see it but not me. Or when I did during a rare moment of lucidity I didn’t care. I just shrugged my shoulders and carried on regardless. I was hopelessly hooked on the attention and forever chasing my next fix.

It was all about the next race or the next personal best. I joined a running club and had no shortage of running partners both at work and at home. I was Mr. Popularity or so I thought. My phone never stopped. My weekends were spent travelling around the country to race events instead of with Fionnuala and the kids. Then one day all that stopped. I run alone now. My phone can sit all day without anyone messaging me. And you know what? I’ve learnt to be okay with that. Because it’s no longer about me. It’s about others. It’s about YOU.

Running is now a means to an ends. I don’t run for the glory, I run because I need to. It cleanses and detoxifies me mentally. When I run I can dispose of all the negativity and unwanted junk rattling around my brain. I get most of my writing ideas when I run. Anxiety and dark, unwanted thoughts seep out of me along with the sweat from my pores. I used to use running to lose weight physically. Now I do it to unload excess mental and spiritual baggage. Running empties me and leaves me with a focus and clarity of vision which is laser sharp.

Running has taught me how to embrace and overcome pain. It has taught me patience. I prefer long distance running. My favourite race is the marathon. 26.2 miles is a daunting challenge but one thing I am not is a quitter. When I start a race or a challenge I will not stop until I have completed it. One of the few positive attributes of my obsessive nature. If I have to crawl to the finish line then I will. Defeat is simply not an option. I hate looking at myself in the mirror at the best of times but it would be doubly galling if i was looking at the face of a loser. I choose to overcome no matter what it takes.

So I will never stop. And I will never give up. And nor must you. No matter what. When I run I break every mile down into twenty sections. I run to the next bench, the next hedge, the next pothole in the road. I break a seemingly unassailable distance down into manageable bite sized chunks then count them off on my Garmin. Every 1/20th is a battle won and a step towards winning the war. I break it down in order to build myself up. I make the impossible possible. And so must YOU. I’ve written before about finding your grind. Become a pain sponge and suck it all up. Because, like me, YOU are not a quitter either.

Don’t look at the summit. Just focus on the next stretch, the next bend, the next step. Break it down and you will see the barriers fall and the milestones pass behind you. YOU are better than this. Never mind creeping death. Yours shall be a creeping glory. The enemy never feels threatened by an opponent who barely appears to be moving. He is oblivious to slow, almost imperceptible progress. His defences will fall and he will idle. And before he knows it YOU are past him and it’s game over. YOU are astride your Everest and the pain has been replaced by glory. The glory that is your story. Creeping Glory.

Take my hand and run with me ok? Together we will overcome.

What are your thoughts on this post. We would love to hear them. Please comment below and let’s get talking.

49 thoughts on “Creeping Glory

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      1. I do sometimes but mainly in the summer and only a couple of miles at a time, I’m not very good and have to have a warm evening, the right music and go just far enough to get completely out of breath 😄 2 miles is about my limit but I will start again in the summer, it’s just not really my thing. Plus we can’t have two people out running almost every day or we would never see each other. How do you manage running 150 miles in a month and spending time with your family? Scott has also done 150 and I feel like I’ve not seen him all month.

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        1. It works out at less than an hour a day and I don’t have any other interests (bar writing) so I’m not out of the house that much. I don’t drink, smoke, etc so I hope it’s not too much. But now I feel guilty lol.

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          1. Ah don’t feel guilty on my part! It’s been a little different here with running club, races and track nights so I guess he’s out of the house a lot more than you. Thank goodness run every day January is over 😊

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              1. Yes I read your blog the other day. I think he’s at the same point you used to be, I’m just trying to keep him grounded with his Instagram now, it’s so easy to get caught up and lose sight of what is really important.

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                1. Instagram kind of took over my life. I lost a load of weight, started running marathons and couldn’t handle the newfound attention. My ego got out of control and I became a pretty horrible person. I’m just trying to make amends now.

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                  1. Wow, it’s so tough to keep a balance and not put the pressure on yourself that others start to put on you when you get to a certain standard. His running is going to continue growing this year so my job is just to keep him level headed with it all. I can see how easy it would have been to get in that position and you have full credit for realising and making a change.

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      1. Not a problem…I renamed my blog early on and that caused some people problems. Perhaps that’s the issue…also, I post very irregularly, sometimes just once a week.

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  1. Congrats on your accomplishment! And even more, THANK YOU for the reminder of why I run. I do it differently than you, but for the same reasons. I fell out of the routine for a while. I’ll make today my first day back in it. ☺️ Gotta run!

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  2. Wow, that’s an impressive achievement! I’ve never tallied up my miles, but I know it was not nearly 150! That’s awesome! Well written blog, too, by the way. I always enjoy reading them. And I’m trying to learn from your example of persistence and authenticity! Thanks! 🙂

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  3. As a very little girl I used to love to run. My favorite story is of a time when my grandparents took me up on the mountain to go sledding and on the way down the mountain I insisted on running. They thought it was funny and if nothing else would make sure I slept well that night. Instead of running just a little way down the mountain and then getting back in the car to go home, I kept going all the way down the mountain no matter how much they begged me to get in 🙂 I ran races in elementary school too but the last one I ran, I was close to winning when a girl beside me crumpled in pain, I tried to stop and help her but as soon as I came near she stood up straight again and took off before I knew what had happened. I lost the race and never have desired to run again! Lol I guess you could say I don’t like to be cheated and I don’t care to relive bad memories, it’s too bad though I’ve been trying to get back into it lately.

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  4. It might be totally untrue, but I have heard that those who don’t like taken pictures of them, are not confortable with them selfs. Is is ridiculous?

    Love reading your thoughts. Have a nice day!! All of you.

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  5. I let go of doing things for the “glory” of it long time ago… or maybe I just never started… I do enjoy having my phone ringing for messages or calls, when I do know it’s real, and I think we all do. We all just need a bit of affection and consideration. It’s not about feeling great “because” we’re popular. It’s about feeling loved. I’m not sure I’m commenting properly to your post, that is very keen on letting go fakeness and doing things that make us feel good, independently on a “social” outcome. Maybe I’m just overflooding… Sorry about that…

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  6. Make me number 9 😉 truly inspiring post. Heard more than once that running helps dealing with depression. Didn’t get myself to do it up to now. Maybe change is coming. Anyway, to stay focused on the next step or breath is a good way to manage life, not only running. Sometimes, well, more than often, I forget it. Thanks for reminding.

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  7. It’s amazing how many people have found running to be a peaceful necessity. Even in the worst weather they feel better off for it afterwards. I tried to join a running group but my right knee gave up on me (that’s my excuse anyway) so I am having fun trying to learn new dances instead. This not just keeps me supple but entertains my daughter who thinks it is hilarious that her old mum is trying to be hip n trendy bopping along to the latest hits. 🙂

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