A Word to the Wise: Running toward a healthy future

By: Tom Rupp
-A +A
I just crossed the birthday line again for the 51st time. Time waits for no one. There are things I could do years ago that I can no longer do. It’s the stark fact of aging. Some of it is inevitable. Some of it is due to poor habits. It is with this in mind that I recently began a program called “Couch to 5K in Nine Weeks.” Someone on the Internet compiled a set of nine musical sets to follow the program. The sets consist of music to both walk and run by each week. The times set aside for walking are at first longer than the times set aside for running. As each week passes, your walking time decreases and your running time increases. The first week the running time consisted of 90-second sets. I am on the fourth week and now the running sets are five minutes each. That’s pretty good for me. However, I recently read in the Telegraph about my friend George Waxham who, in his 80s, is more fit than I am. So, three times each week I have been running. Perhaps a bit of clarification is in order here. By “running” I mean something more like a fast trot. With practice things are improving, but I wouldn’t be so cocky as to call it “running.” So far it has been a positive experience. Isn’t it amazing that our four hinges known as knees and ankles do so much for so long with so few problems? My mother-in-law just had her left knee replaced, after 75 years of use. With therapy she should be up on her feet in no time. My grandfather was old school. During his last years the running craze was just taking off and he didn’t get it. He said that such constant pounding was not good on the body. At 90 he was still fit and trim, probably from a healthy diet and daily walks. Also, he had a full head of hair, but that’s another subject. If all goes according to plan, I should be able to run three miles each day sometime in September. That sounds daunting at this point. The Bible says in Hebrews 12:1 that we are to “run with perseverance.” Living for God is like a marathon, is it not? We start, we plug along and somewhere down the road we finish. Ah, the finish line — now that’s a line I won’t mind crossing. Tom Rupp is a Bible teacher at Capital Bible College. He can be reached at