Tina Reeder. Ironman.
“There we were, just He and I crossing that finish line and I felt His presence like never before.”
Before November 5, 2011, Mrs. Tina Reeder had a few titles—all recognizable by her CCA family: mother of CCA junior, Avery Reeder, Health and Home Economics teacher, cheerleading coach, CPR instructor, and even special friend. And on November 6, at precisely, 12:46 am, Mrs. Reeder added this new title to her name: Ironman.
If anyone knows anything about IronMan, let’s just say it takes a lot of work, commitment, and determination to see it through. The swim/bike/run training is intense and when you see an Ironman race you recognize how amazing those ironman people truly are.
Mrs. Reeder decided to train for the Ironman race after she completed her first triathlon in 2005 at Disney World. “It was at the finish line that God showed me that all I needed was Him,” Mrs. Reeder wrote in her blog, The Quest for the IM. There she explains how during her triathlon she got separated from her running partner, but she had Christ as her company and was able to finish the race.
This realization made her want to do the Ironman. She felt God had called her to run, bike, and swim with Him alone. And on November 5, she did just that. Her only brief disappointment was that Mr. James Reeder, who went to be with the Lord in March of 2009, was not there to share her happiness. The thought of him in heaven with God, who was also here with her, was all the strength she needed to move forward.
On her blog, she gives a full account of her entire Ironman experience– a journey that began way before the race and still had lasting effects afterward: “It’s 3am, 3 days after IronMan and I can’t sleep! I think I am as excited right now as I was the moment I crossed that finish line and still wonder if it was all a dream.”
But it was definitely not a dream. On her blog she shares some of the toughest parts of the race, how she struggled and how God pulled her through it. As she tells it, at mile 20, of the 26.2-mile running portion, she realized that she had two hours to finish six miles. She explains her feelings as, “Nothing short of amazing.”
Through sweat, tears, and perseverance, God continually showed Mrs. Reeder His love for her. She shares her amazing experience and how God never let her down. He constantly reminded her of the task at hand and supported her all the way. “Just you and me Jesus, just you and me,” she said as she crossed the finish line. And as she did, she raised her arms to heaven. For an onlooker, she must have appeared just like another runner throwing their arms up in the air after a hard race. But Jesus knew better.