Tuesday, May 12, 2015


It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the Sunday, May 10th Chicago Tough Mudder! After an entire year of trying to build stamina, we arrived early in the morning to 45 degrees, fog, rain and LOTS of mud! I quickly realized none of my "training" prepared me for this.

This was the third time our family was on the Tough Mudder course on Mother's Day, and it was BY FAR the worst weather and muddiest course we had ever seen. Our team, #letscarryshari, completed the course in about 5 hours with all 11 team members (Chad, Kate, Ender, Greg, Tom, Tiffany, Jason, Kris, Tony, and Kyle). It was quite possibly the most difficult thing I have ever done, but it was also one of the best days of my life!

As I sit here on Tuesday morning, two days post-event, there is not a muscle in my body that doesn't hurt! Many of my team members would say the same thing. The other 10 members of my team varied in skill and ability level, but EVERY one of them gave 110% and not one of them quit on me! I literally could not take a step in the deep, wet, mud without hanging onto at least one arm, and most of the way I needed to hold onto two different people. Together, we soldiered on. I was so impressed with everyone's commitment to helping me get through and over and under each obstacle and across every step of that 10.6 mile course, without complaint, even when we were all of the verge of hypothermia. And a special thank you to my niece, Libby, and her friends Amanda and Marissa, who drove three hours to volunteer for a 6-hour shift at the finish line, just to be there when I finished! <3

I am deeply touched, truly humbled, inspired and forever grateful to each and every one of them.I learned so much about myself, about my 10 teammates, about 3 spectators that came to cheer us on in that miserable weather even though they had never met me, about complete strangers out on the course, and about God. I was really encouraged that complete strangers stopped to help me, and to cheer me on throughout the course. God showed me His strength in my weakness, through each person He put alongside me on Sunday. Praising God that we all finished without injury and thanking Him for His grace that got me through. To God alone be all the glory!

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