Jason's March to the Marathon: Saluting soldiers and humility - WTVM.com-Columbus, GA News Weather & Sports

Jason's March to the Marathon: Saluting soldiers and humility

(Source: Jason Dennis/WTVM) (Source: Jason Dennis/WTVM)
(Source: Jason Dennis/WTVM) (Source: Jason Dennis/WTVM)
(Source: Emilie Arroyo/WTVM) (Source: Emilie Arroyo/WTVM)
(Source: Jason Dennis/WTVM) (Source: Jason Dennis/WTVM)

COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) - When the going gets tough, the tough keep running - even if I don’t feel like it. That’s determination, but it also helps to put things into perspective while training for this marathon.

Compared to one of my long runs, soldiers do more demanding tasks on a daily basis. Because of the members of our armed forces, I have the freedom to run the race.

I have military friends who run or march, on their own, with a 50+ pound rucksack on their back. I ask if they’re crazy. No, that’s just part of their training, not for a marathon, but for their job and for possible war.

I’ve seen soldiers running the same trails and parks as me. I don’t stop and salute them, but I probably should. They certainly deserve it. But that’s not why they do it.

And I’m not running a marathon simply for the glory. Through running and my walk of faith, I’m learning more and more how to be humble.

Running for 3+ hours on some of my latest training runs have been humbling, pushing my body through fatigue and soreness and not giving in to my selfish need to stop before I’m done.

I’m also at the mercy of my body and the conditions in which I run. Mother nature doesn’t care about my running schedule.

Yes, I’m proud of what I’ve accomplished so far, but it’s also not just about me. While I want to prove to myself that I can complete the marathon, there are also other very important goals.

I hope to motivate others to either start running or exercising, or maybe inspire other runners to go after a longer race or new achievement that they never thought was possible.

Also through this my race at the end of this month, I want to bring more awareness to causes like the one I’m raising money for: rescuing sex trafficking victims through the “Out of Darkness” ministry in Atlanta. You can help this cause, while supporting my marathon effort. Learn more and donate at https://www.gofundme.com/runoutofdarkness.

Over the weekend, I got more reminders to push myself above and beyond, from two events on Fort Benning. There was the Best Ranger competition, where two-man teams compete in grueling back-to-back events, around the clock for 60 hours, with little time for rest or meals. My marathon will be difficult, but doesn’t compare.

There was also the Spartan Race, where hundreds of people braved the 3+ miles filled with 20 very challenging obstacles, through mud and much more.

I’m so proud of my co-worker, reporter Emilie Arroyo, who finished that race – not giving up in that several hours it took her to cross the finish line, alongside many military. She’s sore, but is now a Spaaaaartan!

One of the themes of that race is “If you think you can’t do it, you’re wrong.” That’s right, and worth a salute.

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