Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Where do you find your self-worth?

One of my favorite running blogs is Mile Posts by Dorothy Beal. After reading her latest post,
A Runner's Body, I realize how my story is similar to hers.

I encourage you to read her blog, especially if you are a female runner. She has a lot of great insight. She talks about how she lost 30 pounds when she started running and what a challenge it was to gain the weight back until she was healthy again. I love the last line of her most recent post:
          
            In plain clothing I don’t get told I look like a runner anymore but I don’t care: a. cause I am a runner and b. because I no longer define my self-worth by what I look like.

I want to be able to say that I do not define my self-worth by what I look like. It is something that I still struggle with. Here is an example:

About three years ago, when I was in the best shape of my life (also at my lowest weight), people who didn't know me would ask if I was a runner, even when I was "in plain clothing" as Dorothy put it. One time in particular stands out in my mind when a person I had never met before asked if I was a runner. Am I a runner? This was a hard question to answer. Many thoughts ran through my head as I thought about what to answer. My first thought was, I must look fit, and that made me proud. After all, I had worked for my body, right? This thought didn't last long as the second thought plowed through- Does he think I'm too skinny? Is he going to suggest I stop running so much? Of course, I don't think this was what he meant at all. He was simply trying to make conversation and maybe give me a complement. The final thought that went through my head was, no, I'm not a runner because I'm not fast. This was the dumbest thought of all. I was faster than I had ever been, but I was still not satisfied. So many other girls were running several minutes faster than me, and I always felt like I was running at the back of the pack. The truth is, I improved dramatically in the three years I ran in college, and now I would do anything to run the times I was running back then.

So all those thoughts went through my head in about a millisecond and all I answered was, "Yes." I tell that story to show how concerned I was with how other people viewed me. I didn't want to be too skinny or too fat in the eyes of the world. At this time in my life, I was very concerned with my body and what I looked like. I was also beginning to find my identity in running. I wanted people to see me as a runner, and I wanted to get faster. These two goals influenced almost everything that I did.

Skip ahead three years. I am now 30 pounds heavier, and I agree with Dorothy, that it was one of the hardest things to do, much harder than losing the weight. I no longer get asked if I'm a runner, but unlike Dorothy, I do care. I wish I didn't, and it is something I'm working on because my identity is not in running or what I look like. I know many girls struggle with body image and self-confidence. It is a battle that we face, but we must remember that we are made in the image of God and He made us who He wants us to be. Our job is to keep our bodies healthy, so we can glorify Him to the best of our ability. This will look different for every person. I encourage you to find out how you can do that by looking to Christ, instead of looking at the world.

The pic on top is when I went back to North Greenville after spending a year at home and gaining back the 25 pounds I had lost. The pic on the bottom was a year and half earlier.

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Saturday, February 18, 2017

Ibuprofen and Earbuds


This is a picture of the trail that I ran this morning. I did not take this picture because I was not up early enough to see the sunrise. I decided to sleep in a little this morning and endure the heat for my long run of the week- I wanted to get in 6 miles. I started at 9:30 and it was probably already in the 80s. For some reason my legs, hips, and neck were sore. I don't know if it was because I had run every day this week or something I did at the gym. Anyway, I really wanted to get in my 6 miles so I took some Ibuprofen (something I NEVER do before a run). I don't know why I'm against taking ibuprofen before a run. I guess I think if something hurts so much that I can't push through it, then I shouldn't be running. I made an exception today though and reasoned that it also might help me mentally- that I might think I'm in less pain. Whether it was mental or the meds actually worked, I was able to get through the 6 miles without stopping. I stuck my earbuds in and tried to forget how hot it was. I know 6 miles isn't a very long run at all for many runners, but I hadn't done a long run for a while because of being sick and doing a race last Saturday. So it was a tough run.

Last week I ran a 5k at the same trail that I did my long run. I had been sick all week but I had already signed up so I went ahead and ran it. There were a lot of people and the atmosphere was great! It wasn't my best run, but I was happy with it after not running for several days. And I got a cool medal:

I love running races, especially here because I'm able to meet some people outside of MCA and Redeemer. I'm also able to get a feel for what the running community of the Valley is like. They can't compare to the running friends I had back in Tennessee, but I hope to get into a good group around here.

Another South Texas Sunset

I've taken so many pics of sunsets and sunrises here. They are just so beautiful and all I can think of is how majestic and creative God is. I feel so small when I think about all of creation and all the glorious wonders He has made for us to enjoy and to proclaim His name. The sunrises and sunsets are just a small reminder of that.

I've been really happy here the past month. Nothing different has happened. I've just been able to get into a rhythm and I love it. Of course there are hard days like when my day starts at 6:30 am and doesn't end until 9:30 pm because of bball games. Speaking of bball...our boys team just won District Championships. They have a play-off game on Tuesday and I think they have a good chance of winning. They are a talented and hard-working group.

Besides basketball, I've started a running group in the morning for students who want to come. We weren't able to have track this year because it conflicted with our Fine Arts Banquet. But I knew several students wanted to run so I'm giving them that opportunity. I just wish we had some different routes we could run, as there are not many options where the school is located.

We've been having some problems with our electricity here at the staff house where I live. Last weekend we went without power- from Friday morning until Monday night. It was kind of like we were camping lol. The good part was we still had hot water and AC- a huge blessing!
I'm also loving the weather now. It is usually in the 80s. Every day is like a summer day that's not too hot. It's nice to be able to run and not have to bundle up.

There has been quite a bit of sickness going around lately. I got it and it was terrible. It took me about a week to fully recover, but I'm back to normal now and very thankful!
I've been running local races about every other weekend. If you are more interested in hearing about my running adventures you can read my next post.

Thank you for all who are praying and supporting me! God is doing something great here and I'm so excited to be a part of it (I'm sure I've said that before), The other day a student was saved! Praise God! I was so happy for her and I pray that every student can have a relationship with Christ! Blessings to you all.

-Corinne

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Ramblings about Running

I wanted to write a post just about running, some will find it interesting and some of you, not so much....so I'm sorry if this completely bores you. Running has been my main hobby lately. I wouldn't say I've been running a lot as in putting in many miles in one week, but I have been running consistently. Every day after school, I'm able to go to a nearby park and run 3 miles. I enjoy this time listening to my music and thinking about whatever while also pushing my body. I've been getting faster just by running 3 miles every day, which I REALLY want to get faster so I'm pretty excited about this. I was also able to do 7 miles on Saturday at a new location. It was 30 degrees and windy which is very unusual weather for the valley, so the park was deserted. It was a great feeling having the whole place to myself, and it was also nice to go somewhere different.
I've also been reading a lot about running. I probably spend as much time reading about it than I do actually running. I just finished a book by Suzy Favor Hamilton. I'm not going to recommend the book because if books had ratings it would be rated R. Suzy was an Olympic runner who later came to live a double life as a Vegas call-girl. It was definitely an interesting read but gave a little too much detail. I've currently been reading Running Man, by Charlie Engle. If you are an ultramarathoner, I'm sure you know who he is. He was a drug and alcohol addict who started doing endurance sports and even ran across the entire Sahara dessert. It just amazes me how much pain someone can go through and still continue running. I've also been reading several running blogs. MilePosts is my favorite and if you are a female runner, I would definitely say to check it out! I've also started the book, How Bad Do You Want It, where Matt Fitzgerald looks into the psychological aspects of running. I'm not sure I agree with most of it, but maybe when I finish I have more to say on this book. Lastly, I just watched the Prefontaine movie. I love watching movies about runners.
Ok. So after writing that, I realize I sound obsessed and I probably am. I enjoy running and love learning about running. However, there is a point at which it becomes an idol. I don't want it to come to this point. I don't want it to come before God or before others- I pray that it hasn't already done so. One of the cool things about the writer of MilePosts is she is a Christian. She talks about how she prays during her long runs. I want to be able to do that. I want running to bring me closer to God instead of farther way. Usually I'm just thinking about how much it hurts, how I should be going faster, or what I want to eat afterward. It is very hard for me to pray while I run.
I've come to accept the fact that I was not born a natural runner. It doesn't come easy to me at all, and I am not built like a runner. I want to be able to run long and fast, but I feel that I can't. I probably put in a solid 20-25 miles per week on a good week. This is NOTHING compared to other runners, but I have to remember not to compare myself to others. It's my body, my run, my race. I want to see how fast I can get my 5k time- right now I'm making small goals and am shooting for 26:06. But I eventually would love to be in the 24s.
I'm not interested in running marathons. Maybe half-marathons or 10ks. I just want to run faster, not necessarily farther.
Ok I think I'm done rambling about running. Hope I didn't bore you too much!

Monday, November 7, 2016

King of the World


Another great song that reminds us just how small we are and how big God is. This morning I was reading in a book by Beth Moore called "Praying God's Word." (It is a really great book that focuses on breaking free from specific strongholds). There was a quote by Neil Anderson that caught my attention: 
"Satan's ultimate lie is that you are capable of being the god of your own life, and his ultimate bondage is getting you to live as though his lie is truth."
I paused and asked myself- am I god of my life or is the Lord God of my life? There are many areas in my life that I try to do myself....this leads to anxiety and frustration because things never turn out exactly how I want. What I need to remember is that God is King of the world, and He is also King over my own life, including all areas of my life, big and small.
Who is the god of your life? I pray that listening to the song above can help you answer that question. Have you forgotten who God is and who you are compared to God? I know I often forget and that is why His Word is so important to us...to remind us every day who we are, who God is, and what God has done for us. 
I'm thankful God used this song and quote to refocus my attention on the King of the World.

Monday, October 31, 2016

MCA XC

So it's been over a month since I've posted and I'm trying to remember the important stuff that has happened. Cross country season is now over. We had three fun and exciting meets. The first two meets were against larger schools, but we still did really well. This past weekend we went to Waco for the state championship. It was about a 7 hour drive, but God kept us safe and we had no mishaps on the road. The atmosphere at the race was exciting and I am so glad that the kids got to experience a state meet race. They did their best, but they raced at 2 in the afternoon and it was about 88 degrees. No trophies were brought home, but I am so proud of their hard work and perseverance this season. They are truly a great group of kids who encourage not only their own teammates but other runners too. I think they did a great job of representing Christ this weekend and that it was truly matters.

Here are a few pics from the meets:
Now that cross country is over, I have a little more time to run on my own and get ready for my half. However, basketball season is starting which I feel will consume most of our lives. It is also elementary soccer season which I have reffed two of their games. This was definitely out of my comfort zone as I know nothing about soccer. But now I know a lot more than I did and actually enjoy reffing...and playing it too when I get the opportunity.
God has been so good to me, but unfortunately I have not returned His blessings. I am not in His Word as much as I should be and I know it. Please pray that I would stay focused on Him and study His Word and pray often. The only reason I'm here is for Him and I don't want to forget that no matter how busy I get.

That's all for now!

October Newsletter

Hello,
Happy Fall! I hope those of you who get four seasons are enjoying the fall weather. It is getting a little cooler here (meaning low 90s instead of in the hundreds), but I am starting to miss the changing colors of leaves and the crisp mornings of fall. However, I am still loving it here. I’m getting to know the students and staff a little better, and I am getting into a routine.
We are finishing up the 9th week of school. It has gone by fast. I’ve started teaching some nutrition lessons to the middle and high school during PE. This has opened my eyes as to how much they don’t know about food and their bodies. They seem to want to learn, and I have so much to teach them!
I want to thank everyone who donated to the cross country team. I have received $245 and the team is able to compete in three meets! The first one was on October 8th. They did really well and the girls’ team even got third place! I am so proud of them and look forward to seeing what more they can do. They will compete in the state championship in Waco at the end of this month so please pray for safety during travel and for the runners.
As for life outside of MCA and Redeemer…I’ve gotten to enjoy some nice runs, walks, and bike rides. I like to swim when I can too. I plan to run the South Padre Island half marathon in November. Thank you for the prayers, encouraging letters, and financial support. Each of you is such a blessing.
In Christ,
   Corinne Schmidt