I write about my life and life itself seen through my eyes for who can write through the experiences of others if not their own?

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Celebrate Life Training Runs

I have seen races that never get more than a handful of people. Year after year the numbers remain low regardless of weather conditions and no one can figure out why.

On the other hand, there are runs that get a number of people regardless of conditions. No one can figure out why.

Then there is the Celebrate Life Half Marathon training runs – 4 of them. I don’t know how they started, who suggested it. I am 100% sure it was not me. I hardly have anything to do with them other than being a driver while my friend handles the logistics, marks the course before every run (I attempted to help once and messed it up even more…no good deed goes unnoticed. Mine got noticed for all the wrong reasons.)

Water and Gatorade are provided at 3 spots and off we go for 13.1 miles. No food provided, no awards for finishing, no speeches before other than “be careful” and no entry fees.

Is that what does it? At every training run we get over 35 runners regardless of the weather conditions. We have run in below 20’s temperatures, sleet, rain, wind and the numbers remain the same.

Runners can run 13 miles anywhere, they don’t have to drive to Rock Hill, NY to run the same course week after week, but they do. They sit in the car silently awaiting all the other runners and they come out at about the same - time 5 minutes before 9 a.m. Why, I wonder do they come? I wonder if they come to the training run for the camaraderie they find but then again they can run in groups somewhere else, besides at the training run you see them taking off ahead of everybody else…what gives?

It must be the low entry fee…No fee. No score, no pressure. No one knows who ran faster, who cut the course short, who went in the woods and who stayed behind. We know who starts, we don’t know where anyone finishes and we like it that way.

They like it that way.

Maybe races should do the same, remove all pressure, wave the entry fee, keep no scores.

Maybe we should charge for the training runs…..