Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Ryan Hall

Great interview over at Running Times with Ryan Hall about running and his faith in God. Check it out here.

I highly respect him as a runner, but even more as a Christ follower.

My favorite Ryan Hall video here.


  1. Quote:
    "RT: Are you this good because you have worked and trained harder than everyone else, or because you are more blessed?

    RH: Neither. I am what I am because of the grace of God. God’s grace has allowed me to pick myself up out of the dirt time and time again. That grace is something we can all have. It obviously takes a lot of focus, discipline, humility, hard work and all those other things that make up great athletes but that is just who I am. We can all achieve a level of greatness when we are who we are meant to be to the fullest."

    I love the above Q/A because that's exactly what I believe. One of the important things about humility that I've learned over the past several years is that there is no way we can ever know God's reasons for things that happen. To think we can figure them out is to give us a lot more credit than we deserve. God's reasons are His alone. I feel blessed that I have the ability and talent to do something that I really enjoy doing. I personally feel God's presence more when I'm suffering on a run and I actively turn to Him and ask for strength. Sometimes he responds with strenght, sometimes not and I just continue to suffer. Doesn't mean anything, it just is. On those days when I have a great run, I just relish it and try my best to give thanks for the experience. I don't think God necessarily wants me to be a good runner, but I am thankful that he has allowed me to enjoy the sport to the level I have and to set goals and continue to push myself to achieve more.

  2. Brad,
    I couldn't have said it better myself. I REALLY like what you have to say.

    I certainly feel the closest to God when I'm out in the mountains alone running long distances. It's a hard thing to explain to people. For people like us, running is that connection or "bridge" to God. Obviously not everyone can be a runner (for that we are blessed), but everyone needs to have "their thing", the time of mental idleness in which they are alone with their thoughts and God. The Bible says, "Be still and know that I am God". I think society often forgets that we NEED a time of stillness and reflection. That's the magic of running for me.

  3. I thought Ryan did a wonderful job in answering the questions. One of the problems with our society is the misconception that God is only gracing us if we are at the top. I am currently reading Joe Gibbs "Game Plan for Life". One of the things that it discusses is that if we will allow God to work in our life, he will provide excellence in what we do. God expects us to work hard, whether that be as a professional runner, a garbage man, a doctor or a banker like myself. Ryan pretty much points this out. We do feel closer to God when we are out in the woods having a wonderful time. God is tickeled pink that we are having fun whether that be by ourselves or with a wonderful group of friends. God provides grace to all of us, whether we are the winner, the middle of the packer or dead last. Running is magical and special to each of us, but that magic and specialness is a gift from God.

  4. Well said Rick.

    Colossians 3:23
    "Whatever you do, work at it will all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men,"

    GREAT words to live by.

  5. Read that article this last Thursday while substitute teaching. I also respect Ryan and his walk with Jesus. More and more I find myself wanting to run for causes greater than myself. It gets old running simply for me, myself & I

  6. Yes, I agree CJ. It would be really cool to get some sort of ultra/trail "team" together that runs for a cause like World Vision or something similar. Kind of gets my wheels turning.

    With that said, sometimes I feel it's inappropriate when people are obviously running for "Me, Myself, and I"(which is ok to do), yet covered by the facade of altruism and donation collecting (not that I think RH does this). It's a tedious tight-rope that we walk when running for a worthy cause in a sport where ultimately it is about us, our race, and our experiences.