Now I'm normally not one of these folks who goes to get the mail and the writes a blog posts about the penetrating insights gleaned from a typically, mundane task BUT this is different; here are the moments that struck me.
- Everybody (ok, not everybody but a lot of people) are running for someone else. I was honored to be invited to run on "Team TJ" - a group of friends and family who run to remember SPC Thomas J Barbieri of the 82nd Airborne, who was killed on August 23, 2006 in Iraq. I never knew TJ but I know one of his brothers and let me tell you, if you don't think it makes a difference to run a race like this with someone's name on your back who died in the service of this country, well then I guess we just come from radically different places. I know the couple of times I thought about feeling tired, I thought about our fighting men and women not having that luxury and I kept my civilian butt moving.
- One of the speakers at the start of the race was a Special Olympian. I never knew but now I'll never forget the Oath of the Special Olympics. "Let me win. But if I cannot win, let me be brave in the attempt." I'm getting choked up just thinking about that moment. Again, it was one of those events that pierces the fog of worrying about your shoes or if your number is on right and makes you remember that if the greatest physical challenge you face is feeling sore or achy, then you need to stop and remember how lucky and blessed you truly are.
- I was also reminded that the running community is incredibly supportive and encouraging. Everywhere along the route people were cheering runners on and runners were looking out for runners too and congratulating people and keeping them motivated. At the end of the day, all of us were really competing against ourselves. I wish that happened more in more places.
- Lastly, I learned that if you train and prepare then you need to trust in your abilities and let go and just run. The Blerch can suck it.