An athlete before running a race might have trained for months and sometimes years with one aim to win. And in the track his/her focus is on the finishing line, how to get there to win the reward. As an athlete you can’t go to the race with heavy attire; it will be a strain on their strength and prevent them from winning. Hence, they wear light weight attire for easy movement.
As believers we are in a track race in this world, running a race for Jesus Christ. Not a race in competition with other believers but in a race to win souls for Christ. And we cannot afford to allow ourselves to be side-tracked with the cares and weight of this world.
Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Hebrews 12:1-2
Lay aside the weight of gossip, backbiting, envy, selfishness, greed and worries, which a load preventing you from running the race with purpose.
In every race, you will endure pain to able to reach the finished line. With your own strength, you cannot win, but thank God for Jesus Christ who has made it possible for us to win. Jesus has already finished this race; you can trust that the obstacles has been cleared for you for you to victoriously finish the race.
The cloud of witnesses are not spectators, but experts whose experiences testify faithfulness so believers should be encouraged that, they can run the race of faith with endurance and reach the finished line of heaven.