Today was the big day: the Jog-A-Thon! Ian did a great job and met his goal exactly by finishing with 14 laps in the 20 minutes. (The track is 200 meters – I’ll let others who enjoy math more than I do figure that one out.)
I volunteered to work the event and was on the morning shift, which worked out quite well since Ian’s class ran just after 9am. There’s definitely a pattern with these little athletes: They come out the gate really strong. As in, really WAY too strong. Then, by the end of the first lap or halfway into the second, they are on their first walking break. So the volunteer/parent mantra of the day is yelling out to the kids, “Pace yourself! Slow down!” Or when they were at the start line at our area – the little pep talk: “Now remember, don’t go too fast or you’ll get tired quickly…you have 20 minutes to run…slow and steady wins the race…” Yeah, well, we might as well be talking to a group of over-eager elementary school kids because… Oh, wait – maybe that was the problem?
Of course, Ian was no different. He took off from the start line like a bat let loose from the Oregon Zoo and was completely out of breath by the time he rounded the third curve. He rallied though, and kept going with short walk breaks now and then – ultimately ending up with his quite respectable 14-lap showing.
Jeff walked down from the house to help cheer him on and was able to capture some shots. It’s a fun event for most of the kids and adults. I left for work just before noon with a big deadline to tackle and must admit, was kind of exhausted when I got there. It must have been all that fancy footwork to the music…with a set of pom-poms, no less! I think the pom-poms were out for the kids to cheer with, but I had to tackle a kindergartener to get mine and no way was I giving them up.
Thank you to all who supported Ian and Raleigh Park in this year’s event. If you’re reading this and feel inspired, his fundraising site is still accepting donations for the next week or so.
Meanwhile, we start his training regimen for next year on November 1. After all, the kid deserves a few weeks off.