Thursday, October 10, 2013

The Training Schedule

My boys ran their last middle school cross-country race last night.  My boys are in the middle.  Jackson is looking right at me in the picture. :-)

 The gun went off, and I heartily cheered them on at the start and at the mid-way point.  The race was intense.  It was the finals!  As they splashed through mud, some kids even lost their shoes!

I stood about 200 yards away from the finish line to encourage them on their last stretch.  They ran with all they had.  As Jackson passed me, he was involuntarily gagging while he sprinted.  I stayed where I was because Tyson was close behind him.

The principal reported to me that green beans came up from Jackson at the finish line.  About 30 seconds later, Tyson came sprinting by.  As he tried to pass a kid on his last stretch, the kid shoved Tyson back.  Tyson continued to run hard, and he too threw up at the finish line! What in the world??  I made my way to the boys and gave them both big hugs.  They looked exhausted but pleased with their performance.

Because the course was so muddy, it wasn't their fastest race, but the kids CLEARLY ran their hardest!

On the way home, I asked my boys if they wanted to continue to run and train for the national AAU race in Georgia coming up in December.  I told them if they fully committed themselves, I would give them more efficient and consistent training than their middle school opportunity had provided... it was their choice, but they had to commit and not complain about the training schedule.

I gave them a tentative schedule as we drove home; but in my mind, I knew I would have to do some research to figure out how to help them run without throwing up... I would also have to figure out the best method to help them increase their speed in a safe way for their little bodies.  I didn't know how to do it...

Guess what happened?  Only about 10 minutes after we arrived home, two members of the Elders Quorum Presidency showed up at our house.  (The Elders Quorum is a group of men within our church- most of whom hold the office of "Elder" within the priesthood.  Their duties include serving the members of their congregation in many different ways.)

Since we are fairly new to the area, they came to see if we had any specific needs.  In Michigan, my  husband, Abe, served all three years in the Elders Quorum Presidency; it was a great opportunity of service for him.

These two men asked our boys about their race and shared a little about their own running experiences.  We quickly discovered that these men were both phenomenal runners!!  One of the men asked the boys, "Do you want to know what to do to get faster?"  I excitedly answered before the boys did, "Yes!  Please tell me!  I was just struggling trying to figure out a schedule on the way home!"

The Elders Quorum President gave me an exact training schedule including the foods they should eat before their race so they can keep their food down better at the finish line.  His training schedule was so different than I would have created that I protested a couple of times.  He and Abe laughed.  Abe said, "Just hear him out."

After I wrote down exactly what he suggested,  these two men asked all the children to find verses in the Bible and The Book of Mormon pertaining to racing.  The children searched their scriptures frantically to be the first ones to find them.  Then, very lovingly and patiently, these men taught all of us about the race of life.  It was a spiritually and physically uplifting night.

These two members of the Elders Quorum Presidency, whose duty is to serve, came to our house to welcome our family.  I'm sure they didn't think their service would entail creating a training schedule for young boys, but that is exactly what we needed!  I wanted my boys to grow in their confidence in this sport that they loved so much.  I am deeply grateful for the inspired advice.

Their spiritual application of the race of life brought increased love into our home.  My children's hearts were filled with that love.  As we bid them goodbye, our kids threw their arms around them.  I was shocked to see Mariah actually jump into their arms!

God's hand was definitely in this timely visit from the Elders Quorum presidency.

Today we start our official training schedule!!

I thank God for sending inspired servants to aid us on even the littlest details of our lives.