What started as a day of helping my wife with an event known as Girls on the Run, turned into more memorable day than we had planned. Julie (wife) was the coach of a chapter of girls in grades 3-5 which involves teaching life skills, positive attitude, bullying, self esteem and how running can be a positive healthy part of your life. The group of 15 girls and several coaches meet twice a week for and hour and have a lesson followed by a run. At the completion of the program in 8 weeks, all of the groups from the surrounding area (approximately 2,000 people) meet for a 5k run. I tagged along with my wife and brought the kids (Joey (8) and Jane (6) who had decided early that they were not going to run). When they saw the excitement that morning from all of the other kids, along with the fact that mommy was leaving to run, they decided they were going to run. My son was wearing a pair of crocs, and Jane was a little more prepared wearing her running shoes. The race started and we all began with my wife and the group but soon had to drop back as Joey kept losing his Crocs and Jane’s unseasoned little legs couldn’t keep up with mommy and the group!
Tears from Joey as he couldn’t keep his shoes on made him come to a complete stop right in the middle of the stampede of families. Right there and then the decision was made – his shoes were coming off. He snapped out of it and said “Daddy! This feels so much better can I just run in my bare feet!?”. He did have socks on.
My understanding of biomechanics and running of course without any doubt knew he could hold up for much longer barefoot then in a pair of Crocs. Barefoot it was. Joes attitude completely changed from crying and not running to him forcing Jane and I to keep up!
We weren’t able to keep a steady pace as Jane needed to walk so I resorted to carrying her as much as I could so that Joe could run.
Here is the gang at mile 2!
I think we averaged a 14 minute mile when it was all said and done. The most important thing was the kids were thrilled!!
Jane ended up taking a 2 hour nap which began immediately as she hopped into the van.
As for Joe, for those who are going to ask, his feet were fine. Not a single scrape or blister!