I am often questioned on why I pay to run. Why pay for the misery and for something you can just go and do whenever and where ever? People have even offered to pin a number on me and buy me a shirt. Haha... yah they are clueless. It's much more than that. I love this quote:
"In running, it doesn't matter whether you come in first, in the middle of the pack, or last. You can say, 'I have finished.' There is a lot of satisfaction in that."
-Fred Lebow, founder of the New York City Marathon
I had been having a really rough go at it, lots of bad run days. I had hit a wall. Good thing is I kept pushing at that wall. Well last week I felt I finally broke through just a bit. So I needed the opportunity to prove to myself I was strong enough to break that wall. I searched for a race and signed up for a 5K about an hour away from my house and convinced my 13 year old to sign up with me. There were about 500 runners. It turned out to be a priceless day. Yes, I proved to myself I was on track by getting my best time yet, got an awesome shirt, great food and lots of fun after the race, but more important was the real reason I pay to run these races;
The woman who kicked butt and won the race was impressive.
But more inspiring were these runners that I am proud to say I ran with:
- Watching my own incredible 13 year old sprint to the finish line beaming when she claims to hate running.
- The 80 year old man I talked to while running who was running barefoot,
- The 80 something year old woman who was crazy fast and looked to have finished in the top 10.
- The 15 year old who had already in his short life had multiple open heart surgeries and finished his very first 5k that day.
- An 85 year old man who was the winner of over 10 Ironman competitions,
- The mother who sobbed as she hugged her daughter after they crossed the finish line.
- The couple that passed me at the 3 mile mark and pushed me to stay with them just as my brain said you can't go any further.
- The runners who were killing it and the runners who were struggling but kept moving.
- The 499 other runners and volunteers that were out doing something good!
- The fun time I got to spend with my daughter and watching her realize she's stronger than she ever thought!!
I truly came away that day much richer than the money I spent!