This weekend was an exciting weekend full of racing. Unfortunately I was unable to race but I did have the opportunity to meet so many talented & passionate runners. Since I am still on the injured list I enjoy doing this type of thing because it keeps me involved & is sort of like therapy for me.
I had a chance to finally meet a runner I have read of and think so much of simply because he has been running for a long time and maintained such a fast profile, The Alan Black. I got to talk with him and take good pictures. He was such a humble person to talk with. Heck he never mentioned the 1st time of how he won the whole race with his 1:14 smoking fast time. I also got to meet so many older runners. I hear often from people that are older that they could never finish a race much less a marathon. I immediately tell them of the story of my 1st marathon in 2006, The Jacksonville Bank Marathon. I finished in 4:14 and I finished with a 65 year old! These older people I met had so much passion for the sport and were so happy to tell me their age! Throughout my running I have found meeting people with a passion and who are truely humble athletes motivate me most of all!
I also attended The Run for Love 5k and my son got to run his 1st road race. I was so proud to let him experience this, because he has always known this is what his mommy does but I wouldn’t let him participate with one til he turned 6 years old. It was nice to have him with me and especially great to see him take home a win…. I also got to see alot of my friends in this race and of course get some nice pictures of it all. Meeting and talking with running greats is a hobby of mine and my 1st running coach Mr. Frank McCleod was there as well as my current running coaches Mr. Mike Beeman & Matt Triick. These fellows have taught me alot and trying to teach me more…. I was running the mile with my son and ran up on Mike he immediately said “You’re not supposed to be running”! But I did only jog the thing to be with Range, and today I am sure regretting it.
I am very blessed to have good coaches & friends that actually care and are so knowledgeable to my running. Mr. Frank my very 1st running coach, has been running for over 40 years & his accomplishments consist of so much. When I met him and asked him to coach me in 2005, he looked at me and said ok I will see what we can do. He said I will meet you at the high school at 5 am for our 1st training session and he really didn’t believe I was going to follow through. I lived a mile from the school then and he was unaware that I already had been running for some years before then and honestly just how serious I was! So I got up the next morning and ran to meet him at that high school! I have been running with him and taking his advice ever since that morning! Frank was an excellent coach, he taught me so much about myself, and was a caring coach as well. If I had a bad day we always took it to the streets & made it better by completing a good hard run. I was married when I was training with him back then and I went through a horrid divorce during that time. When we would run I wouldn’t talk much about this but when I did he would pray with me and quote relevant scriptures. I still recall so much of our training and I speak of him to people who ask my advice on running.
My current running coach is also a legend to the running world with so many accomplishments to his name. I have known Mr.Mike for most of my running career, if you wanna call it my career:) But I knew him from the network of running the races and my coach Frank had also ran with him most of his running career. But this year after I had experienced a deep depression after missing my marathon in March due to this injury to my leg, I contacted him and set up a lunch to go over possibly coaching me. I let him know what my ultimate goal was to qualify for the Boston Marathon and I learned he had done Boston 35 times in his lifetime and had ran an Olympic Qualifier back in his day! So I was definitely on board with him since this meeting. He inspires me so much and I love looking at all his photos and hearing his running stories….
My other current running coach is Matt Triick. He is an ultra marathoner & triathlete who just happens to be a dietitian. I met Matt through the running network also, and I found him so interesting to talk running with. He is from Michigan and has only recently began running over the past 2 years, but his ability to run is fantastic. Although he has been running only 2 years he also has quite a record behind him, and is such an encouraging supportative person.
I am very thankful for all these people I have been blessed with to help me with my running which means so much to me. I believe if you have a true passion for something your passions will always show through and you will be blessed with good people in your life to help you make your dreams a reality!