Steep, Cold, Snowy, Icy, and Treacherous are all words that aptly describe the conditions of the course for this morning's Mount Tom Trail Challenge that was organized by the Tioga Running Club. The route consisted of about a two mile loop (one mile to the top and one mile back down). The goal: run as many laps as possible between the hours of 9am-11am. It seems like there were 30+ people who decided to take the mountain this morning and I was glad to count myself in as one of them.
It goes to show that there are different kinds of crazy, many of them good!
While I consider myself to be a proficient trail runner, my idea of a solid trail run is maybe 5-10 miles over moderately difficult terrain. Some of those men and women I ran with this morning are bold enough to take on 30-50 mile trail runs over some of the most rugged terrain; talk about challenging! One of the people I ran the mountain with this morning was actually out last night putting in abut 26 miles on the Mt. Tom course! (nice job Eric)
While I may not personally have a desire to run anything more than, oh lets say about 13 miles at a time, I am inspired by those who pour their hearts out in the long and grueling endurance races known as ultra-marathons.
They inspire me because I want to live my whole life in a way that is reflective of that kind of tenacity, endurance, and grit. It causes me to reflect on the example of Jesus. He knew the vision that God had given him; to invest in the lives of people for the sake of bringing about healing, wholeness, peace, love, and hope even when doing so came at great personal cost. Jesus embodied this kind of tenacity, endurance, and grit in the way he poured out his life in love and service to others.
As we seek to live lives that are rooted in relation with God and given in love and service to others let us resolve to do so in a spirit of tenacity, endurance, and grit; after-all, it is said that love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful and endures through every circumstance...sounds like an ultra-marathon of faith lived out to me.
On your mark, get set, GO!
Finding God, self, and community in wild spaces. The better we know our wild neighbors the more we'll discover ourselves.
A vision informed by Henry David Thoreau’s interpretation of sauntering, Jesus’ understanding of neighbor, Aldo Leopold’s concept of thinking like a mountain, Rachel Carson’s prophetic voice and John Muir’s way of capturing the beauty and uniqueness of wild neighbors with words.