The background: a few years ago, during the 1998 Race For the Cure, I decided I wanted to run in the Race the next year. It is, after all, a "race", and I figured it would be good for me, and fun. So even though I hadn't run since I'd been forced to in my 9th grade gym class, I forced myself to start training for it. I slowly built up my endurance, conditioned myself over the next year, and I successfully completed my first 5K race in 1999. I was ever-so-proud of myself.
Since then, I've run in a few other races. I don't run to win, and I never come anywhere near doing so -- my goal is just to finish. It's hard! I must admit: I'm a terrible, terrible "runner" (and I use that term in the loosest sense). I love the idea of running, I love how I feel when I'm through...but I hate actually running. I kept hoping that if I continued to do it, I'd grow to like it. This hasn't happened, unfortunately. I still run now and then, because it is a healthy activity, but I don't really like doing it. I still love how I feel afterwards, but whenever I'm running, the thoughts going through my head are usually centered around this theme: "When, oh when, will this torture end?!"
Anyway, my sister is turning 30 at the end of this month. She decided that before she turned 30, she also wanted to run in the Race For the Cure. (She, my mother, and I have participated in the Race every year since my mom was diagnosed with breast cancer back in 1997 or so, but they have always done the "walk" part, not the "run" part.) She was inspired by my success, of course, and by how much I love running. (HA!!)
Somehow, she talked my mom (who has been cancer-free for 4 years) into doing it with her. Basically she didn't want to make mom walk all by herself, and she didn't want to train for the running all by herself. My mom, approaching the age of 60, thought there was no way she could do it, but was willing to try anyway. So sis found some "prepare yourself for your first 5K run" regimen, and she and my mom have been doing it religiously for the past few months. I've joined them now-and-then for their runs, but not much.
The whole thing fell apart when we discovered we'd all be out of town for this year's Race. But sis didn't want all that training to go to waste, and she really wanted to run in a 5K before she turned 30. So she found another race, and we all signed up for it. That race was yesterday.
All three of us completed the race! This isn't such a big deal for me, because I've done it before. I did okay, and I'm pleased with myself...but it was a huge deal for sis and mom! It was the first time either of them had completed 5K. They both ran the entire distance. My sister and I kept the same pace, and mom was only a few minutes behind. Yay for all of us!