3.30.2015

Motivation Monday: Run with your Kiddos!

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Did you take the time to read the title of this post? Yep, run with your kiddos! It is the best thing you can do not only for your kids but for yourself. I see too many runners get caught up in racing and chasing their next PR, sticking to their training plan no matter what, and their eyes are focused on the prize. Sure, being rewarded for good work is great but I get a sick feeling in my stomach when that prize is a material medal or trophy. When there is so much focus on that prize that the runner wanders off away from his/her family at the finish to look at finish times and hunt down the prize. There is so much more to running than that! My prize can not be seen or held. Read on to see if you can figure out what my prize is.

I LOVE running with my daughter. Okay, 99.99% of the time I LOVE running with my daughter. We have had some tough runs over the years where she was less than 100% convinced that running was the thing to do. This started way back when she was still in the jogging stroller. I still remember the day she was crying out in frustration about being hot. We had a bit to go to get back to the car and shade was nowhere in sight and the sun was coming at just the wrong angle so we couldn't block her darling face and body from the vicious sun. So I did what any loving running mom would do --- I poured some of my drinking water over her head. We still laugh about that day today...the day darling daughter was so hot and miserable that Mommy poured water on her head.

Today the challenges are different because she is fighting the battle many runners face. The battle of doubt -- I can't do it. I can't run a mile. I can't run up and down those hills. I can't go one more step! Through these runs I have learned something. My daughter needs the "tough coach" every now and then. The one who says, suck it up buttercup and go! Not the one that says, okay darling. Take a break. Let me know when you are ready to run. Of course, I let her know walk breaks are perfectly acceptable but when they are stretching out longer due to doubt....Coach Mommy steps up to the plate and she loves that she has her Mommy, a real running coach, to coach her. And yesterday she saw, hard work pays off!

A couple of months ago we started her training for upcoming races. We missed the Leprechaun Dash on March 17 for various reasons so that short sprint fell to the wayside but I had my eyes, and hers, focused on the 1 mile race she did yesterday and the Mother-Daughter 5K we are doing in May. We have even talked about cross training and how her horse back riding lessons are making her legs stronger and will help come race day. She pointed out running at recess is good training too! Yes it is darling daughter.

Due to where we live, a lot of her running with me is on tough terrain meaning pretty big hills. We have a neighborhood mile that we have done and it has some killer hills! Needless to say, it also has some mental challenges but she did it and I promised her, come race day, the mile there will be a breeze!

She was excited to get to the race start and we saw a couple of her friends there too. The race was a local run raising funds for schools so lots of kiddos! With where she was in her training I knew the mile was the race for her. Too early to do the 5K as I want her to go into the Mother-Daughter race happy and confident not burnt out. One of her friends joined us as her parents weren't running and I let them know, darling daughter loves the run/walk strategy. That was good and her friend has some cross country experience. I now knew my two buddies and once the horn blasted, off we went!

We started in the back of the pack behind the 5K runners but those girls were passing people steadily along the course. A few times I had to guide them to the course as their happy legs were going who knows where. This is another good reason to run with your kiddos! Following a course may be tougher for them than you think plus when we got to the final turn I had to take a moment and verify. Yes, I knew where to turn but there was no volunteer or sign confirming it and I am certain at least one or two milers may have continued to follow the 5K runners on their course instead of veering off.

Once we got closer to the finish line I told my buddies to put it into full gear and beat me to the finish. I stepped behind them and off those two girls went and let me tell you, they put in a good final push with me cheering behind them and tons of spectators cheering for them too. In this race, all finishers receive a medal so they proudly received their medals with big smiles.

After letting darling daughter indulge in getting some juice we returned to the finish line to cheer others on and watch dear hubby finish as he ran the 5K.

Did I miss not racing for me? Not one bit! No, I didn't get a PR. No, I didn't have an official finish time (that was reserved just for the 5K). But I got something more! I got to run with two blooming athletes and support their accomplishments. I got to hear their chatter here and there and got to sing silly songs to help them up the gentle hill, which I am sure felt big to them. Towards the end they confessed they were solely focused on telling themselves to just keep running (and they did). Yes, I jumped into a "just keep running" song Dora-style. Darling daughter asked me how do I keep running. I told her --- because I run for more than myself. I run for a reason. I run for Toby!!! And yes, I blew out a couple of "Run for Toby!" chants too. That made them smile. Those moments mean so much more to me than a PR or new race distance. Those moments touch lives and I can only hope that the impact on them is as special as the impact on me. And the finisher medal I received -- that will be going to Toby!

Daily Gratitude: I am thankful that I can run with the kiddos!

Daily Bible Verse: Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize. ~ 1 Corinthians 9:24

2 comments:

  1. Congrats to darling daughter!!

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  2. My sons are teens and there's no way they'd be caught running with their mom! I'd beat them anyways.... :p

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