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Saturday, July 6, 2013

Trials of an aging runner


   There once was a time when if someone asked me if I was still "jogging" I would respond that I was still "running."  Somehow the image of a plodding jogger was not one with which I wanted to identify.   This was the time that I took pride in never letting a woman pass me in a race.  I know that sounds sexist but you have to set some goals and that was one that was easy to monitor.
     When my daughter started running I ran along with her on her first 10K race, the Peachtree 10K.  I would slow down frequently to let her catch up with me and I encouraged her to finish the race strong.  Fast forward to 2010 when she had to slow up to let her "aging" father catch his breath in the Chicago Marathon.  She wanted to do a marathon with me before I got "too old."  Somehow seeing one of your offspring do something better than you is one of those seminal moments for a parent.  Kind of a "passing of the torch."
      More recently I have been humbled even further when I have experienced a speed walker and a younger  runner who was shuffling along pass me on my run.  The thought that went through my mind was "am I going THAT slow!"  Last Saturday this humbling process hit a new low (high?).  I was passed by a guy running backwards!!!!  I fully expected that he would run a circle around me as he went by.  I know that I should be glad that I can still run (jog?) a decent amount of miles each week but somehow the pride I once took in my running has been slow to adjust.  They say that golf is a sport that humbles you but golf has nothing on running in that regard.
      If you are reading this blog Saturday morning just know that there is an aging runner out there on a path in Columbia experiencing some "ego adjustment."

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