By Ginger Herring
Four leaf clovers, pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, Leprechauns, the luck of the Irish. Aren’t we all lucky to be Irish on St. Patrick’s Day? I don’t believe we need to have a special day to be lucky though.
I ran the Columbus Marathon in 1999. It was my 14th marathon and I was still running them under 4 hours. I felt strong, both mentally and physically. I was ready to get another BQ (Boston Qualifying time). Well, you know how marathons go. The race you want doesn’t always go as planned. No matter how well you prepare, something is bound to happen to flatten your tires. I probably went out too fast. I’ve been known to do that. So, at mile 18 I’m hitting “the wall”. The course was cruel as it made me run right by my hotel at mile 18. I was feeling sorry for myself, trying to decide whether to quit and go back to my room or tough it out when I heard a voice yelling at me. It was a young man strapped in a wheelchair, medical tubes attached to him, telling me I look great. He told me to keep running, stay strong, you’ll make it. I was ashamed that I felt so sorry for myself when here was a young man cheering and encouraging me. Needless to say, I ran the rest of the race for him. And, I did finish strong with a qualifying Boston Marathon time. How lucky am I.
If you live in my area, you live and run where most would love to vacation. You can run early in the morning and be treated to some of the most spectacular sunrises ever. You can run in the evening and catch some of best sunsets around. You can run on the beach and see pelicans, heron, and maybe some sea turtles. You can run Coffee Pot and see dolphins, manatee, and otters. You can run Crescent Lake and see white pelicans, storks, eagles and of course ducks and those pesky geese. You have the option to run all year long at beaches and bays, lakes and trails. How lucky are you.
In my part of the world, we have incredible race directors who put on equally incredible races. There’s nothing better than to be part of quality, first-rate races right in our own backyard. We have the best running stores and breweries who host the best group runs. There’s no better place than running stores and running groups to offer you advice and expertise while having the time of your life. We belong to awesome running clubs. There’s nowhere better to socialize, find like-minded people to run with, or be involved with the running community. We are healthy and happy. When we aren’t healthy and happy we have support from our fellow runners. How lucky are we.