Wednesday, May 23, 2012

A Season of Rest

1There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens:
2a time to be born and a time to die,
    a time to plant and a time to uproot,
3a time to kill and a time to heal,
    a time to tear down and a time to build,
4a time to weep and a time to laugh,
    a time to mourn and a time to dance,
5a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,
    a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing,
6a time to search and a time to give up,
    a time to keep and a time to throw away,
7a time to tear and a time to mend,
    a time to be silent and a time to speak,
8a time to love and a time to hate,
    a time for war and a time for peace.
- Ecclesiastes 3:1-8

The past week and a half has been a time of rest and rejuvenation for me. I ended my “season” of studying and school work, and have temporarily entered into a season of much needed rest. Overall, the semester wasn’t overly grueling, but my mind, body, and spirit were ready for a good period of rest. Honestly, I’ve spent the last 10 days or so not doing too much. After our conference track meet in Wichita, I came down with a cold and spent much of the time recuperating, and thankfully had a lot of downtime to just do a whole lotta notta! I was able to read some good books and magazines, watch a few good movies, and not have to worry about studying and working on an assignment. I even got a week break from running, which was great too.
I remember some of my high school teachers warning me about how worn down you can get from a semester of college. I was never really sure if it was true, because I never experienced any kind of burnout from high school. I’ve certainly discovered that they were correct!
This past week I’ve begun to slowly ease back into a normal routine again (I even woke up at 9:00 yesterday!). I’ve been trying to make it a point to hang out with as many friends as possible; I leave for Ann Arbor on Tuesday! I’ve also gotten to spend a good amount of time with family so far too, which I’m thankful for! It’s going to be busy out at Michigan, it’s crazy that it’s almost here. Sometimes the best way to fill the lull from one busy period to the other is without much structure at all. My soul’s been craving a period of rest, and hopefully this downtime will give me the drive and energy to tackle the summer and my upcoming senior year head on!

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Hay's In the Barn

    It’s a big week coming up! It’s final exam time, and also the Missouri Valley Outdoor Track and Field Championships are this weekend as well. After battling injuries and just missing the cut my first two years, this will be my first time running at the conference meet, I’ll be running the 10k!
    Preparation is critical to success in both running and school work. One thing my high school coach would always say leading up to a big race like the state meet is: “The Hay’s in the Barn”. In other words, all the preparation and hard work is done, now it’s time to freshen and sharpen up and let the cards fall where they may.
    In terms of running, I completed my last tough track workout this past Thursday. I’ve been amazed by the grace I’ve been given in the little time I’ve been back, these next few days I’ll do a few lights workout, and just work on stretching and rolling out my legs, hydrating well, and getting a lot of sleep so I can get the best performance out of my body Friday night.
    For school, it’s been a relatively light semester, and nothing has been overly demanding. This past weekend, I actually travelled back home for my twin sister’s graduation – she completed her degree in Animal Science from the University of Minnesota Crookston in only three years! It’s tough sitting here writing this right now, knowing that I should be studying while she can relax and watch T.V., not fair!
    Honestly though, I’m not too concerned with my academics regarding this week. I’m a big believer in getting an early jump on assignments and studying for tests. Cramming just doesn’t make sense! I came across this about a week ago and found it fitting regarding the upcoming championship track season and finals:

    “Did you ever consider how ridiculous it would be to try to cram on a farm – to forget to plant in the spring, play all summer and then cram in the fall to bring the harvest? The farm is a natural system. The price must be paid and the process followed. You always reap what you sow; there is no shortcut.”
    The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People – P.22

    It’ll be a fun week, I’m looking forward to taking a break from my studies for a while and relaxing. The finish line is in sight, it’s time to kick for home and finish strong!

    “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. Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinful men so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.” Hebrews 12:1-3