Up To Speed On A Few

Ok. I’m going to comment on several items here in one post. Of course there is the ongoing Ironman training for those of you who are keeping up with it. And as the photo indicates, I am at week 5 and still using all of my own fingers. This is an endurance week which means I am starting to push my distances a little bit and do those miles at race pace. Yesterday I did a 2 hour ride on the road and covered about 36 miles. Today I ran for 90 minutes and covered a little over 8 miles. photo-7.jpgTomorrow is a swim day at 30 minutes, and I will add some biking after that to make about a 90 minute workout. I continue with push-ups and crunches at least every other day and am trying to get a little weight off as I would like to be at 180-185 pounds by race day. I will repeat all of these workouts again in the next 6 days.

As I was running today I pictured myself crossing the finish line in Phoenix after probably 15 hours of racing on that day coming April 13th 2008. What will it be like? I think I will break down in tears. In fact I think I won’t be able to control my tears. I may sob. I cried after my first 70.3 and didn’t really understand why at the time. And even still I am not quite sure that I understand it. But I do know that this is a deeply spiritual quest for me, even in some ways that I think God has still to reveal to me. I do know that he is in it with me. I feel him there, sometimes there more there than anywhere else in my life. So I will cry, and I may sob.

So this leads me to the next of the “few” which is someone else whom I have discovered was on a spiritual quest, and that is Chris McCandless. I read some stuff in Into The Wild again yesterday which stuck with me. Along with his body in that bus on the Stampede Trail were found clues to how he existed and to what he was thinking. One of those items was a sort of declaration of independence that he scrawled (the movie shows him carving it out with a knife) on a piece of plywood. Part of that declaration reads, “…The climactic battle to kill the false being within and victoriously conclude the spiritual revolution…” So it was a spiritual quest for him and he at least knew it by the end. He also in other writings indicates having a sense of rebirth or a new dawn and claims a path that he refers to as “deliberate living” by which he means intentionally living in the now. Then in early July (he walked into the woods in April) he finished reading Tolstoy’s Family Happiness. One of the passages he underlined in that book according to John Krakauer, the author of Into The Wild, was, “He was right in saying that the only certain happiness in life is to live for others…” It was at this point in early July that he packed his backpack and started the trek out, having a sense of discovered that which he needed to discover I am certain.

But as we know he found himself trapped by a river swollen by the spring thaw 3 to 4 times what it was when he easily waded across it in April. Then he injured himself by eating some unedible berries. Those two mistakes cost him his life and brought the story alive for the rest of us.

So Chris did not lose his life for nothing because his story has impacted me and helped me understand myself better. I would like to tell him that. His story, God is using to speak to me. And as I said before I will probably be reading it over again and again and again for some time.

So another part of the “few” is that sometimes I wonder what else I would like to tell him if I could. And today while I was running I came across yet another song from the Alter Bridge boys that has profound impact on me.

“One Day Remains”

As your will is bent and broken
and every vision has been cast into the wind
as your courage crashes down before your eyes
don’t lay down and die


‘Cause I see in you
More than you’ll ever know
And I ask you, “Why
You question the strength inside?”
And you need to know
How it feels to be alive

When every wound has been re-opened
And in this world of give and take, you must have faith
And the distance to your dreams stretch beyond reach
Don’t lay down and die

No

Cause I see in you
More than you’ll ever know
And I ask you, “Would
You question the strength inside?”
And you need to know
How it feels to be alive…

How it feels
How it feels to be alive…
How it feels
How it feels to be alive…

How it feels
How it feels to be alive…

Cause I see in you
More than you’ll ever know
And I ask you, “Would
You question the strength inside?”
And you need to know
How it feels to be alive…

How it feels to be alive…

So I wish I could have told him not to give up when he found himself in such a critical situation. And I don’t mean to imply that he did give up. Maybe he did absolutely everything he could to get out of there. In fact, I’ll bet he did try everything he could think of to do to get himself out of there. But I just wish I could have been there to help him, to encourage him, to say to him that you know what, it does look grim, it does look bad, but at least you know how it feels to be alive. And I can remember that for myself. At least I know how it feels to be alive savoring every moment and drinking in all God has created and placed and does here as he is at work in his kingdom. It is just awesome to be alive, and sometimes when things are bad that may all that I’ve got. But that is HUGE!

And now the last of the “few.” I was thinking as I heard this song today that there are really quite a few really good solid rock songs (Not that poppy stuff that tries to pass for rock. I’m talking good solid rock. Not metal either. Just good solid rock. If that phrase “good solid rock” does not make sense to you, then you don’t know what good rock is so don’t worry about it. You won’t understand it and don’t need to try. It’s just like those stickers that say “It’s a Jeep thing. You wouldn’t understand.”  So it would be appropriate to say, “It’s a rock thing. You wouldn’t understand.”) out there with really great lyrics and significant meaning. So I had an idea. I think that Dr. Paul (If you don’t know Dr. Paul sign on to http://www.heartconnexion.org and learn about what he does) needs to start a “Long Hair BT.” In the Long Hair BT only really good rock songs would be used. A whole additional population of folks could be reached, those of us who love good rock (who may also have long hair and tattoos both of which I am sporting). Of course I am joking, but it is a good idea.

And Bill, I am still working on that ponytail.

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2 responses to “Up To Speed On A Few

  1. Now there’s a thought. But could I grow a pony tail too?

  2. freestyleroadtrip

    I would love to see you in a ponytail. Awesome. You rock, Dr Paul.

    Doug

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