Monday, October 5, 2015

Run Like A Kid

Last year, my cousin introduced me to a series of 5K races that benefit local elementary schools in a neighboring county.  Each school hosts their own 5K and 1 mile fun run to raise funds for the school and PTO. They have names like "Cub Run", "Turkey Trot", "Jingle Bell Trail", and "Griddle Gallop" (my personal favorite, as they give you a big stack of pancakes after the race!) I ran my first one a year ago this weekend.  I was hooked from the start. 

On Saturday, I woke to chilly, rainy weather (as did much of the Southeast).   It wasn't the ideal day for a run, but I wasn't going to let the weather stop me.  I laced up and headed out.  We started in a squishy, wet practice field.  We were to run up three sets of hills before proceeding into a local neighborhood for the remainder of the run, returning to the same field to finish. 
Feet soaking wet, slipping on the grass, we ran.  We ran the (not even slightly gentle) hills.  We ran in the wet, dreary rain.  We ran up and down paved hills.  We ran.
Kids of all ages ran as if it wasn't cold, or wet.  They ran as if it was the most wonderful thing in the world.  Which if you think about it, it really is.
It's humbling to see how quickly these kids finish a 5K!  (First overall was a 5th grader who knocked it out in a little under 18:00).  They remind me not to take this thing so seriously, but to just enjoy the journey. 
This particular journey led me to a PR and second in my age group.  And while I feel certain that I could have / should have done better, I am just thankful for the journey.  I'm thankful I was able to get my feet wet (literally as well as figuratively) again, and jump back into the racing season.  I didn't fully realize how much I had missed it.   Thankfully, I have another 15 races in this series left.
Run for yourself.  Run for fun.  Run to benefit the schools.  Run for bling.  Run for whatever your motivation is.  Just freaking RUN!

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