|Image courtesy of Sura Nualpradid/freedigitalphotos.net|
I ran my first 5k this past January. I’m not exactly a sporty girl (because being active = perspiring = getting messy), but I signed up for this run willingly and without regret. What in the world inspired me to do so? Two words: my sister.
About a year ago my family and I stood at the finish line of the Rock ‘n Roll half marathon waiting for my sister to cross over. Around us stood hundreds of people cheering loudly and waving their banners as the runners passed by. It was definitely one of those “you can feel the excitement in the air” moments. Perhaps it was the adrenaline rush I felt that day or the pride I had in seeing my sister accomplish something so great, but something made me want to experience it, too.
Which is why I decided to wake up before the sun on a cold winter morning to run 3.10686 miles. (I would later find out that waking up early would be the easy part.) Thankfully my sister agreed to run with me because I would not have made it without her! She kept me distracted with good conversation from start to finish, especially during the final mile as I huffed and puffed up and down a couple of hills (good thing I hadn’t known about the hills when I signed up!). When we crossed the finish line, I wore a smile of relief on my lips and sweat plastered hair across my forehead. I’m sure my cheeks were bright red, too. My sister, on the other hand, looked like she had just taken a stroll in the park. She breathed normally and had a nice rosy glow about her. Our parents who had come to meet us after the race congratulated us and our mom took in both of our appearances. She then turned to me and said in a matter of fact tone, “Ten years do make a difference.”
Thanks, Mom! LOL 😉
Let me bring up an important fact – my sister is ten years younger than me. One whole decade. She has ten years less of wear and tear on her body. She has a lot more energy and stamina than I have had in a long time (especially since kids entered the picture). She was able to run a half marathon without passing out and just ran a 10k the other week, so a 5k was no big deal for her. Her knees are likely a lot stronger than mine.
What ten years has done for me is given me more life experience and maybe a little bit of wisdom, but it’s added some weariness and disillusionment as well. For some reason, as we age, things tend to become more complicated. I can’t just get up and go anywhere, anytime that I want to. I have a lot more responsibilities and have to narrow down my goals. There is a limit to how I can spend my time, energy and resources. And my joints have started to make a lot of cracking noises.
Which is why I needed my baby sister to inspire me to run.
I’ve discovered that it’s good to hang out with young people. People in their teens and even twenties view life with more hope, fervor and possibilities. They tend to be more optimistic, more carefree and more adventurous. They (the proverbial they again) say we should learn from our elders (which we should), but I say there is a lot to be learned from the youthful, too. May we oldies be inspired to consider dreaming again. May we throw caution to the wind and take chances, at least once in a while. May we get our bottoms off the couch and start moving, even at the risk of throwing out our backs.
And may the young’uns out there take this to heart:
“Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity.” (1 Timothy 4:12)
Here is FUN’s song, “We are Young“, which talks about being young and setting the world on fire.
What have the young people in your life inspired you to do?