During a run or a ride do you ever go into that mental zone where you’re in a faraway place or a far away race running and riding with the best of the world? Your right there hand in hand…. Or you yourself are the world’s greatest going out there to tackle the road and trails!!
I remember SR year of high school and I had less than one year of running under my belt and I was taken over by the thought that one day I could be a college runner. So every day in my mind when I was out for a run I was running with Steve Prefontaine. It was just us to running alongside each other with him pushing me to be better. Even in college when I walked on to the team at UCF (I still to this day don’t know why the coach chose me out of all the other walk-ons, this I am forever grateful for) it was me and PRE. He guided me through my first year of running. The ups the downs and the hardships of getting used to a life as a college athlete.
Sophomore year of college Lance Armstrong became one of my new buddies. During every run that hurt all I knew is that if Lance Armstrong could beat Cancer and come back and win the Tour. I could make it through this workout, I could make it through this run. I read his book “It’s Not About the Bike: My Journey Back to Life” 3 times that year!!! You’re going to laugh at this one! I finished the book right before NCAA regional’s in Alabama, so I was SUPER inspired for the race! The gun went off and I stayed at a solid pace for the first 2 miles of a 10K races, As soon as I hit the 2 mile marker I realized I still felt strong and Inspired so I made my move and took off. The next 2 miles was amazingly painful as I pushed and pushed to pick people off… and then it went down hill… All the races during the season are at an 8K distance and I wasn’t able to hang on as my body started locking up from massive amounts lactic acid running through my veins with additional 2K.. and ended up finishing with my worst 10K ever…(I still hate that distance today because of that race) Even after all that I still continue to look at him as a hero and an Inspiration.
But now years later as I now just run as a recreational activity I still run with Hero’s. Except most of the Hero’s have changed. After running my first MCM Marathon 2 years ago I fell in love with supporting our Men and Women of the Armed Forces. After seeing blind soldiers, soldiers with fake legs and arms completing the marathon along side with me… I to can make it through the hard days, the days where I am in pain, or the days where I just don’t have the mental strength to go out there and get my run in.
So my question for you is… Are you running with Kara Goucher, Lance Armstrong, Steve Prefontaine, a family member, or a friend. Who is out there running or riding with you and inspiring you along the way?