I have always been a very competitive person, often to my detriment as I thought I needed to beat the snot out of everybody standing in my way to victory, whatever that particular victory was at the time. So when I saw this shirt with an iconic logo on the front and the words “Me Versus Me” on the back after about a year of running I had to buy it. Running began to change me, not just the rotund mound of fun I had been, but also the ultra competitive person I had been. Hearing things like “way to go”, “keep on going”, “you got this” from fellow competitors who were urging me on instead of trying to trip me was almost mind-boggling to me but I was really starting to love it because it was showing me just what this t-shirt was saying, running is about me versus me. Me pushing me to run longer, run faster, train harder, eat better – me versus me, the new me versus the old me, the active me versus the lazy me, the compassionate me versus the beat you into the dust me – and I was really starting to like the new me.
“…..let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us….” In Hebrews we see the Jesus follower life pictured as a long distance race. We can’t drop out of the race but it’s not a life exemplified by how hard we beat somebody, but by how hard we train our body, our mind and our spirit to run the race of life. At the finish people will look back and see not the “check you into the boards” ultra ass but the person who encouraged them to pursue their dreams and then ran with them every step of the way to the finish line of life. If I can train my body to run 50 miles in half a day surely I can take that same mindset and train myself that in my business I am not competing against the competitor down the road to put him out of business but competing against myself to constantly provide better service, better products and better prices. In my marriage I am not competing against my wife to see who is smarter or works harder but to be her help-mate and encouragement, to find ways to draw her to her dreams also. We can apply me versus me to every aspect of our life because it forces us to look into our own lives and find ways to improve instead of constantly finding ways to criticize outside our lives.
Living an ultra life means that me versus me becomes more than a slogan but becomes the cornerstone of constantly striving for improvement.