As Dolly said in Steel Magnolias, the best Southern drama to ever hit the silver screen, “I’ve always been built for comfort, not for speed.” Me and her both. Even so, here I am getting ready for a charity 5K putting on my hot pink shirt from Athleta, bright blue cropped running capris and purple tennis shoes. The bright colors will make it easier for the paramedics to spot my crumpled body lying in a ditch along the route. Long gone are the days when charities sold Krispy Kreme donuts at the traffic light in front of the courthouse on Saturday mornings to raise money for their worthwhile causes. I miss those days. Now they all have these darn 5Ks.

I don’t have any luck with 5Ks. The first I ever signed up for was on May 1, 2010. I woke up to rain that morning that had the entire state of Tennessee flooded by supper time. I took it as a sign from God that I was not meant to run. It was a year before I attempted another one, one where I came in absolute dead last. The next was a breast cancer awareness run with my darling husband. Partly to motivate me and partly because he didn’t want to miss kickoff by his beloved Bama boys that afternoon, Brian hooped and hollered what he called encouragement the entire time. “Come, on!” “Do you want that girl you don’t like to beat us?” “Hurry up, it’s almost game time!” Get mad at it!” I wasn’t mad at the 5k but I was ready to shoot Brian. The only thing that kept me going was mentally dividing up our marital assets as I ran. Some people say a marriage is strong if it can survive building a house together. I say it is if you don’t divorce after running 3.1 miles. Needless to say, I am going it alone today.

I’m not even sure if you can even classify what I call running actual running. It’s more like a slow jog where onlookers have trouble distinguishing if you are actually in a forward motion accompanied by short bursts of running for just a second or two. I only bust out in this full-blown run when people are along the route or I’m coming up on a water station. You know it makes you feel like a real live Boston Marathon runner to be in full gate as you grab that paper water cup, take a swig and then sling it to the ground as you speed pass.

So, here I go, bound and determined to finish another 5K whether it kills me or not. If you don’t hear from me tomorrow, you’ll know what happened. Don’t worry though, they’ll spot my body. With neon pink shirt, blue pants the color of the Caribbean Sea and brightly colored LSU inspired running shoes, you’d have to be blind not to see me.

Hebrews 12:1 Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us.
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