Growing up I hated the track. In fact, I never ran track. I knew from a very early age it wasn’t for me. When I was in the 6th grade I missed the day we had our PE fitness run. The coaches made me run it all by myself the day I got back. Here’s something I’ve never revealed to anyone before this post… after a lap around the track I FAKED an ankle injury. Yep, I sure did. Why? Because I HATED running.
When you’re a kid it’s all about speed. I wasn’t fast. I knew it. No matter how hard I tried I couldn’t keep up with the fast kids. Not even the not-so-fast kids. When I hit junior high all my friends took track. We all remember the peer pressure of junior high. Ugghh. All the cool kids in my school were in track. But it didn’t matter. I knew it would be less torturous for me to be in the general PE class than for me to try to be something I wasn’t… a trackster. So while all my friends went to track meets and had fun I was playing dodge ball.
High school came around and my sport of choice was basketball. Early in my basketball career I got the nickname Putt. “Putt” because my teammates said I always putt-putt-putted across the gym floor.
History would tell you I’m not a runner. So why am I running my 6th marathon in Boston???? You don't run marathons when you hate running. I learned to love it. I learned that running isn’t about being the fastest. I learned that for me, running is about staying fit, challenging myself both physically and mentally, and doing the best I can do on that day, on that run.
So here I am - 42 years old - out on the dreaded track. Once a week Niki and I do track/speed workouts with John Jasper. He’s awesome and a little bit crazy. John makes us do insane workouts that push us beyond what we think we can do. They are hard. But they make us better. Thanks John. By the way, I’ve learned that John can run BACKWARDS faster than I can run FORWARDS. And that Niki is a speedster. She can kick it. So once again I’m the slow girl trying to keep up with the fast kids. But hey, that’s OK. The important thing is that I'm out there, doing my best and maybe, just maybe, one day I'll like (NOT love but like) the track.