Day 54: Cross-Training: Walking & Running Go Hand-in-Hand

“It is the first mild day of March. Each minute sweeter than before…There is a blessing in the air…” William Wordsworth

My youngest son loves to walk with me hand-in-hand. He even couples his tiny fingers into mine just to make sure we are securely connected. As we drove home from taking my oldest son to school, I say to him, “Let’s go for a walk today.” “Yay!” he replies.

My son has been at home with me since the beginning. These precious moments together are now drawing to an end this fall when he will enter school. He has been my little training partner for the last four years. We ran our first 5K and trained for the marathon together. While I run, he strolls in the Bob watching movies and playing games on his iPod; happy just to be in my company.

Today is a non-running day and a wonderful opportunity to savor the moment, slow down and cross-train, walking style. Together we soaked in the rays and breathed in the fresh air, and started a new journey through the neighborhood. Like running, walking can be done anywhere anytime and I find that perfect for my schedule (especially with my little partner). Although walking is a weight-bearing exercise, it is more gentle on the joints and still works the muscles and promotes circulation in the legs and feet. I have found that walking can be a good activity to substitute for an easy run day, especially if I am recovering from a long run, marathon or injury. If my legs feel sore, walking seems to aid and reduce the stiff and soreness. If you have ever walked with a three-year-old, you know how distracting it can be. So, if you choose to use walking as a cross-training activity, try to remember to walk at a brisk pace to reap the benefits.

Our pace was a little slow and included a few detours (and stretches), but it was refreshing and very thought-provoking. After seeing ducks swim, squirrels scamper, and the playground in view, my son unleashed the strong grip of our hands. He ran free and on his own. Losing his precious, tight grip reminded me of how, at times, instead of clinging to God’s hand, I tend to break the hold and walk alone. Like a young child, I, too, can become distracted from Him, or dislike the restrictions of His hold. Instead of holding on to His hand tighter, I let go. It’s only the falling moments that I find myself looking up and asking, “What happened?” Of course, he answers, “You let go. This time, keep your hand in mine and I will keep you from falling.”

Today, let’s remember to keep our hands in His Hand and walk with Him. He is the only one that can keep us from falling. Let’s renew our commitments to spend time in Bible study and prayer during our walk because He is reaching out to us.

Genesis 5:22-24, “And Enoch walked with God after he begot Methuselah three hundred years, and begat sons and daughters: and all the days of Enoch were three hundred sixty and five years: and Enoch walked with God: and he was not; for God took him.”