Finish The Race

I joined the 1st Asian Obstacle Course Race Championships. I was full of hope. It was exciting to know that once again I could test how much my brain and body could endure. I got more than what I imagined.

I finished the race but it cost me a week of pain. I was struggling to walk.

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Pictures from Facebook page of Pilipinas Obstacle Sports Federation

There were moments when I teared up going to the next obstacle. Going home, I thought it was over but the elevator is still broken. I had to endure 5 floor of stairs going to our unit.

Two weeks after, I realized that while we can be excited with bigger things, if we come ill-prepared, then it will probably hurt us. This verse held me to the finish line:

I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. ā€“ 2 Timothy 4:7

Fight the Good Fight

To fight the good fight involves a plan and a preparation. I knew that the entire obstacle course race was for five kilometers. My friend, Josiah, was always inviting me for a work-out but my schedule just was not working out.

My preparation then was just focusing on the run for 5 kilometers. Days before the preparation, the organizers sent the outline of obstacle to endure. I made a plan out of it already. Most of it involve upper body strength but there are those that I can do. So I decided already to where I will put my energy on.

I knew which obstacles I should reserve my energy and just get a punishment. Unfortunately, I only have two attempts or get a punishment. The punishment was not easy either: Twenty (20) meters walking sandbag lunges (2 sandbags for male and 1 sandbag for female ā€“ 30lbs per sandbag).

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I stopped in the middle of the punishment thinking if all the pain is worth it.

Plan and preparation in real life and in competition is the same. You have to understand that every day is a battle. The enemy have studied you from the time you were born and knows exactly what could tempt you. It has a battle plan for you. Therefore, have a battle plan yourself against them and prepare for it.

On a personal level, what holds me in a battle line is my prayer, reading the Bible and quiet time in the morning. I know that there is a fight that matters the most and that is to fight the good fight with God.

Finish the Race

I have resolved to myself even before the race that there is no quitting. That I should fight my mind. That I should go to the finish line. I paid for it. I paid to get the whole experience regardless of how emotionally and physically torturing it was. I had set the goal from the beginning. Endure until the end!

There were a lot of times during the race that I was tempted to quit. When I saw participants tapping out and quitting, I was encouraged to do the same. I could imagine to rest already. What kept me moving was when I had a small talk with 50+ year olds who are so determined to finish the race. If they are finishing it, there is no way that I will not.

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A 50+ participant who helped me during the race.

A guy in his 50s was his first obstacle race. He is not a runner either. But he encouraged me to move forward. There was one part where we had to crawl over heavy ropes(?). He told me that we should go together so that more spaces will open if we crawl and lift the heavy stuff for easy crawl. We finished that crawl faster than if I did it alone.

I am so glad that finishing the race in this life means I do not have to do it alone. I found mentors and accountability partners who are always there to encourage me. Having them around helps me not to quit in life and allows me to know myself even better.

It is comforting to know that while it is hard to finish the race, there are people who are willing to cross it with you. Willing to endure. Willing to pray for me.

Keep the Faith

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Keeping the faith is believing that no matter what the circumstances are, it will be finished. Soon it will be over. Soon I will be able to sleep. Soon I will be able to rest. Soon I will be able to have reason to eat what I wanted. After the race, that soon came afterwards ā€“ great food and great rest.

We should keep the faith. Faith is knowing that we may have not seen yet how this fight and race will end, we know that it will be a perfect ending. Soon we will be leaving this temporary home to heaven. Soon we will be able to sleep and rest.

We need to hold our acts together knowing that by faith we have been saved. It is finished! Jesus fought the race ahead of us so that while we suffer a little here on Earth there will be celebration in heaven.

WRITTEN BY: JUNVER ARCAYNA

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