Sunday, November 9, 2008

Battlefield Marathon and 1/2 Marathon Re-cap

What a weekend we have had! I am so proud of Chad.

This race was through the Chickamauga Battlefield in Fort Oglethorpe, GA. (This is right on the Tenn. state line.)

The Battlefield is beautiful anytime of year, but especially in the fall. We drove up Friday afternoon hoping that we could drive the course before Saturday morning. Even in the rain/drizzle and slight fog, the fall colors were so vivid. All of us kept saying "Wow" and "Look over there!"

We came around a corner and saw a group of deer. Once we saw this group, we started looking back into the woods, and we saw so many! They were everywhere.

Part of the course..

After we finished we were able to enjoy a pre-race party at my mom's. Well not JUST a pre-race party, we had dinner with my grandparents and my brother and his sweet wife and girls. It was great to just visit with them.

I wasn't kidding in the post before this when I said we would be getting up at 4:30 Saturday morning. Emma decided to stay with my parents and Paddington on Saturday morning. (She knows a good thing!) This is how we left her:

Yes...that is breakfast in bed (I think this was around 5:30) with a portable DVD player. She and Paddington snuggled in to watch a movie. Chad, Chloe and I headed out the door a little before 6:00, made a Starbucks stop and got set up at the race.

There were around 1300 people running and it was so neat to see them all lined up just waiting for that gun to go off. It went off and we watched each of them run past us, saw them make the first loop and head into the battlefield...and then Chloe and I went to the car to warm up.

Chad's Aunt Debbie and his cousin Emily called about the time we saw him make his first they were able to jump on the spectator bus and ride it into the course to cheer him on around the halfway point.

While we waited in the car, Chloe and I prayed all the verses we could find on running and endurance over Chad. It was pretty cool. Then she decided to read for her November book report and I did my Bible study. Then we saw them...

The first runners were coming back in. We grabbed the phone and the camera then RAN for the finish line. It was so neat to see them come across that line. They were incredible and did not even look winded! I was exhausted for them. :)

Debbie and Emily joined us at the finish line and we were thinking we had about 10-15more minutes before we would see Chad. We looked up the hill and saw him and then I looked at the time. I was so surprised! He was coming in several minutes earlier than we thought he would... His official time was 2 hours and 41 seconds. (And he looked great!)

Here are some pictures of his cheerleaders.

Thanks Debbie and Emily for getting up so early and making an effort to support Chad in this! I'm not sure you realize how much that meant to him.

After a hot shower and some chill out time, we headed to eat some Mexican food. (Just what a crohn's patient needs to eat after running 13.1 miles!)

I shared in my previous post why I was so emotional about this. I'll have you know, I didn't cry when he crossed the finish line, I cried in the car when he told me this story. I'm paraphrasing the Chadwick so bear with me.

On the Battlefield there is a tower called "Wilder Tower", it was used during the Civil War. It really is a beautiful tower.

Somewhere around the 8-9 mile mark, he started to come up on Wilder Tower. It was a bit foggy and and the sun was just starting to peek through the trees. The closer he got to the tower he noticed there were sun rays were shining through the fog, the trees and on either side of the tower. He said that of the four hours of songs in his "run" program on his MP3 player, "Strong Tower" by Kultless came on. Of all times for that song to play, God arranged it to be played as He ran past that tower. He said it was a great moment as his Father reminded him that he could do it, and that he was not in this alone. It was so neat to hear him tell this in the car just minutes after completing this run.

I'm not for sure, and I won't steal his blog post, but I would venture to say that was what this race was about...God showing him one more time, that regardless of circumstances, our Heavenly Father is there.

Thanks Mom for setting the coffee pot for me Friday night and for handfeeding Paddington Saturday morning while we were gone!

Thanks Dad for getting up to see us off, I know you were tired. Emma is still talking about having you to herself at the park and getting the oil changed.


Darlene R. said...

Yay, Chad! Good for you!

Carol said...

Yeah Chad!!! That is AWESOME!!

Fran said...

Spectacular!!! I'm just crying over the song and the timing! So God isn't it?

Way to go Chad. The blogging girls are thrilled for ya!


Patty said...

SO proud of Chad!!! Way to go Chad!! What a mighty God!! I have chills all over me. He is our Strong Tower and I love how God timed all of that for Chad!!

Love you,

BethAnne said...

WOOHOOO!!! I am proud of Chad and I have never even met him!!! I have been to Chickamauga several times, but I assure you there was no running involved in my trips there. If I had run that far in 6 hours I would have been proud, but 2 hours??? GReat job....must have been the awesome cheerleaders that helped him out!!! ;-)

Heather said...

Congrats to Chad! I couldn't wait to check your blog and see these pics. The story about the tower gives me chills. I must say- God has spoken to me or showed me something while running more times than I can count! Your family is so sweet, Steph!

Lora said...

I would have cried too! That was awesome! And Strong Tower would have probably caused me to break out in a Rocky Balboa dance if I'd been running - oh, I love that song!
Congrats Chad! What an amazing accomplishment.

Heather C said...

I'm sitting here wiping the tears away over God's goodness. I'm so thrilled for Chad... that he was able to run the race, but even moreso that he experienced the Lord's love and embrace so powerfully that day. How awesome!