Now that the sun is out and the days are longer, this season increases my love of running. Everything in God’s creation seems magnified in the air, and in the birds and trees. With every stride I’m rewarded with great views once I huff and puff my way near the small hills near the ponds. A mother Canadian goose is followed by her goslings who look like ducklings covered with grey and yellow feathers, mimicking her every move.
What I haven’t enjoyed in the last couple weeks, however, is the cooler air that has been blasting me during my run. Running into a headwind, can be quite difficult, especially while pushing a stroller containing a 40 pound three-year old. I am pretty sure those 3 miles in headwind count as at least 9 miles on a normal day. Note to self: when a bug comes flying in the wind towards me, close your eyes and mouth.
Is the blustery Spring air also frustrating you? Here are some tips of dealing with the wind while you run.
Tips in Running in the Wind:
- Dress appropriately. Make sure your gear is wind-worthy. Wide headbands are nice to keep ears warm in cool winds while also securing fly-aways from your face. A good pair of sunglasses help protect your eyes from the wind is also not a bad idea. My eyes tend to dry out quickly, so I alternate with a visor and glasses to protect my eyes from the wind and sun.
- Make it fun. Placing expectations and pace setting can lead to disappointment in the end. The wind will be an added challenge in itself, but think of it as a bonus strength workout! Play around with your run. For example, run head first into the wind for a 1/2 mile, then turn around and sprint back with the wind.
- Plan your route. Go for an out-and-back route or large loop. Your energy level is highest at the beginning, so run into the wind first. By conquering the toughest part of the run first, you’ll be eager for the turnaround. Today, I felt completely winded when I hit the 2 mile mark, but once I made the turnaround, my legs (and stroller) took off. The wind was pushing against my back and I couldn’t seem to run fast enough. It was a great finish to a hard workout.
- Lean into the wind. This helps lower your profile as well as shift your center of gravity into a more appropriate position. Though a straight running posture is more efficient, the wind counteracts it. Remain relaxed, just as you should when running in normal weather.
“When life’s strong winds coming blowing, bend with them and let go. By bending with them, you will be becoming stronger in new places. By letting go, you will be making room for the new and better.” Unknown
When the harsh winds and storms of life overwhelms us we sometimes lose sight of the one most important thing. We always have someone watching over us. God is always there. We think we’re all alone and we wallow sometimes in self-pity not seeing through the darkness to where the light is bright and strong. So when you feel these storms of life blowing you off the path your destined to take, grab hold of the life line that God extends twenty-four hours a day seven days a week. His life line is always ready and available.
Psalm 46 is a model for surviving and thriving in the midst of these harsh winds and storms. In Psalm 46 the nation of Israel in the midst of storm and was being invaded by the King of Assyria. It was a storm to recon with yet in reality the God of Israel stands with them.
Psalm 46:1-11 reads:
1 God is our refuge and strength, always ready to help in times of trouble. 2 So we will not fear when earthquakes come and the mountains crumble into the sea. 3 Let the oceans roar and foam. Let the mountains tremble as the waters surge! 4 A river brings joy to the city of our God, the sacred home of the Most High. 5 God dwells in that city; it cannot be destroyed. From the very break of day, God will protect it. 6 The nations are in chaos, and their kingdoms crumble! God’s voice thunders, and the earth melts! 7 The Lord of Heaven’s Armies is here among us; the God of Israel* is our fortress. 8 Come, see the glorious works of the Lord: See how he brings destruction upon the world. 9 He causes wars to end throughout the earth. He breaks the bow and snaps the spear; he burns the shields with fire. 10 “Be still, and know that I am God! I will be honored by every nation. I will be honored throughout the world.” 11The Lord of Heaven’s Armiesis here among us; the God of Israel is our fortress.
This scripture reminds us that there is one who has power to control the storm. There is a power and peace that flows from knowing the one who commands the winds and the waves. Who is at the mercy of nothing, who is overcome by nothing – but who controls the world with but a word. We find refuge amidst the storms of life in the palm of the hand of our creator God. The one who has all the world in the palm of His hand. You might not know how to get through your storm but God knows. Cease striving, “Be Still ̈ and know that I am God. Seek His counsel – seek His direction.