David is a 14 year old 8th grader at TLAM. He loves Science, everything medical, and his dogs Nimitz and Nebula. He has been running the Junior River Run 1 mile for several years, but this year he decided to tackle the 15k. Months of training starting January 1st now it’s go time. Here are some of his thoughts as well as some vocal commentary .
Packet pickup. It’s getting real!
Morning of the race.
Up by 6:00, eat a honey stinger and wait for Dad to get ready. Butterflies in my stomach. Mom’s driving and we go over the Hart Bridge…”are we going over this bridge?!” Crap! I can’t believe mom tricked me into this. We make it to the Solemates VIP parking lot and the WJCT television center. I’m hungry and thirsty! Luckily I have my gummy bears for energy. Now bathroom time! It’s 7:30.
It’s time! Yikes!
We walk over to our corral, Dad comes with us, and I’m getting excited and nervous! It’s also warm. Dad gives me some last minute instructions and then it’s time for the national anthem (I’m so nervous I forget to remove my visor). Then wave 1 goes off right at 8:00. Wave 2 goes off 5 minutes later and the announcer tells us that we’ll be delayed further to give the two waves time to spread out-really?! Then we are moving up and told to go. I tell mom she better not lose me, and I want to do this next year in my biohazard suit. Lots of runners so running and then walking is tricky. Mom has us move over to get out of people’s way. Mile 1 down Bay Street and then the Main Street Bridge! Everything is going great until I get to the grating. Mom tells me to stare straight ahead but I make the mistake of looking down…uh oh!
I’m running this! It’s really happening!
Mile 2 and 5k.
Ooh mimosas! And Fireball! “Mom can I go get some?” My mom heartily objects and tells me to get water. I’m warm. Honey Stingers and gummy bears for energy. And down Prudential and then Hendricks Ave. On River Road, they’re handing out Munchkins so I eat it and immediately regret it. I hope I don’t hurl! Ooh strawberries! Refreshing! Then left on River Oaks and mom calling to friends and talking my ear off. It’s getting hotter and I’m thirsty. Oops there’s a darn rock in my shoe so we stop. Mom keeps talking about pace-no, I’m faster than Dad but mom is trying to kill me! Left on Hendricks and I’m looking for shade. Another waterstop! And they have ice! I see the 5 mile marker but no bacon or sausage?! I’m hungry!
Atlantic Blvd! Still smiling.
Mile 6 and Atlantic Blvd.
Onward! Past Assumption Catholic Church and no shade! Mom keeps on pushing me forward. I just want to be done. Turn left Holmesdale. Did someone say popsicles? No such luck, they ran out. Homeowners are spraying runners with water hoses, aaah nice! Come on mom! You’ll feel better! I can’t convince her. Every chance I get I get sprayed. Mile 7 and another water stop and then on to no shade Atlantic Blvd. We see firefighters, and mom keeps commenting on skirts she sees that she likes-anything to pass the time. Up hill to the ramp of the Hart Bridge, I’m lagging behind mom and I’m really tired. I’m hot and I don’t ever want to do this again. Mom’s yelling at me to keep up and then other runners are telling me “…go David!…”. Damn mom! I am never doing this again. Stop running so fast, hold on and let me catch my breath, why aren’t we done yet?! Mom’s trying to take pictures but I’m over that. Then she tells me if I run/walk and don’t give up she’ll consider my request for a loan for something I would like to buy. I’m game! I keep on. And then down the ramp and left and there it is-the finish!
Go away mom!
We’re nearly over this bridge! Hurrah!
After collecting water, my medal, and a bag of ice to cool down; it’s a rickshaw ride to WJCT! I am so doing this again! Now a long nap.
The only way to travel after 9.3 miles.
I love that he had such a great time, and I’m so happy that we got to do this together! It was such a special day and I loved experiencing the race through his eyes! I can’t wait to do it again next year!
Remember it’s not about the destination it’s about the journey,