Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us,--Hebrews 12:1

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Hills? What hills?

No. I mean, really, no hills.

We've been in Jacksonville, NC, home of Camp Lejeune Marine Corps Base, for a week and a half. Thanks to a paved running trail that stretches from downtown to the main gate of the base, I've been able to keep up my morning runs. But if the picture in your mind of Camp Lejeune is the landscape that served as a background in the movie Heartbreak Ridge, you're thinking more about southern California than coastal North Carolina.

Though that movie was supposedly set at Camp Lejeune, it surely wasn't shot here. The mountains you'll see in scene after scene in Heartbreak Ridge might be dominating the landscape of a Marine Corps base, but not this one. Over here on the east coast, a speed bump probably registers on Google's satellites as a change in elevation. (Okay, that's exaggerating it a little, but only a little.)

So basically, I've been running for more than a week -- 5 miles, 6 miles, 12 miles, and even a 15 mile run -- with at most 13 feet of elevation change along the routes. If you still aren't seeing what I'm trying to describe, I'll put it in the shortest, sweetest terms I can...IT'S FLAT HERE!
"And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus." -- Philippians 4:19
In the desert, God provided the Children of Israel with manna from Heaven when they were starving and water from a rock to quench their thirst. He provided David a slingshot and a stone to take down the feared Goliath. When Jesus and the disciples found themselves surrounded by a hungry crowd, He fed more than 5000 with only 5 loaves and two fishes.

God always provides for His people, even in seemingly impossible circumstances.

But, how am I supposed to get in a workout to help me prepare for the unavoidable hills in the races we do back home?

Even in this flattest of terrain, God provides. The county that surrounds the city of Jacksonville built a pedestrian bridge across NC HWY 24 when it was constructing the trail on which I run. My hill!

Starting at the southern foot of the bridge, I ran about .31 miles to where the trail flattened back out on the north side. There I turned around and returned to my starting point. Back and forth, back and forth, about 17 times over and across the bridge made for a workout, 5 miles of "hill" repeats.

It's not the ideal hill workout, but we've got to make due with what we have. I'll be back home early next week and hopefully this run will keep the hills there from kicking my tail.



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