This week I ended a run by taking a detour up a flight of stairs so I could throw my hands up and pretend I was Rocky Balboa. It felt amazing! The only thing I was missing was Eye Of The Tiger playing on my iPod. Before you judge me, you need to know that I don’t always do weird things like this. This time was different.

Olaf Rocky Balboa

As noted in a previous post, I am not a very good distance runner. But I need a challenge to stay in shape. A bunch of people I know are signing up to run a 5k, so I got pressured decided to sign up too.

I’ve never run a 5k before, but it’s something on my bucket list. So I have made it my goal in 2012 to run a 5k in under 30 minutes.

When I set a goal I don’t mess around. I bought new running shoes, running clothes, and the 5k Runner app for my iPhone (I highly recomment it). I was set for success.

Sadly, things in life don’t always go as planned. I got some bad news recently: I’m having surgery.

I met with a doctor to follow up on an operation I had 5 years ago after shattering my ankle. He found a lot more damage than we previously thought. Apparently, I have the left ankle of a 78-year-old arthritic man.

The surgeon won’t know for sure until he cuts me open, but there is a good chance that I will be unable to put weight on my leg for 12 weeks after surgery.

This news brought back a lot of bad memories from the grueling months of rehab after the last surgery. This will cause me to miss the 5k, and I won’t be running another 5k any time soon after the surgery.

So I stopped running. I quit on my goal. I justified myself saying, “Maybe next year.” I was really bummed – maybe even a little depressed. The only thing silver lining is that they will remove the metal plate and 8 screws that have been taking up residence in my leg for the last 5 years – definitely not going to miss those guys.

But then I looked myself in the mirror one morning and made a decision. I don’t believe in quitting. I have never been a quitter. I am not going to let surgery beat me. In fact, I plan on kicking surgery’s butt.

I have a little over a month before I go under the knife. But my ankle feels ok right now. I am going to run a 5k, just not an official one. I am going to make up my own 5k. I think I’m going to call it the “First Annual Brandon Sticks It To Surgery 5k.”

It will probably just be me running with my wife waiting at the finish line, but I’m not backing down. I’m not going to let another surgery hold me back. It might be sooner than I planned, but I am still going to run a 5k in under 30 minutes this year.

Rather than sitting on my couch moping about my unfortunate circumstances, I have decided to take the James 1 route:

Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance.
James 1:2-3

That brings me back to the end of my three mile run this week. As I made it to the top of the stairs and lifted my hands, I looked at my time. 37 minutes. Not where I need to be, but I’m improving. I’m going to persevere… like Rocky.

What trials have produced perseverance in your life?