But then this year I wanted to start fresh. So I signed up for a bunch of races. I started officially training for my first half marathon a few weeks ago. And now my first race, the B.A.A. 5K, is next Sunday. I'm a little nervous, as with all races. I want to be good at running. I want to run fast.
I've been looking around trying to find inspiring running stories to get me amped up for this year and training. And I stumbled upon Team Hoyt.
I've always known about Team Hoyt; you can't really be from Boston, watch the Boston Marathon each year and not know them. Father and son. Running races together. Son Rick has cerebral palsy and is a spastic quadriplegic. Doctors told the Hoyts Rick would be nothing but a vegetable. But they persisted and tried to make a better life for their son. A team of engineers at Tufts built a special machine to help Rick speak. His intelligence knows no bounds.
One day he asked his dad, Dick, to run a race with him. So he did. He pushed his son and ran a race, and they've been running races together ever since. I just finished their book "Devoted: The Story of a Father's Love for His Son" and it's left me inspired. Inspired to run further, to push myself harder and to be a better person. It's hard to race as an able-bodied person, but to push along another person the entire way is something to applaud. They've run over 1,000 races together, including multiple Ironman Triathalons. And Dick refuses to run a single race without Rick. Dick is 71, Rick is 50. They are the most dedicated and loving people I have ever heard of.
I highly recommend reading their book, especially if you're looking for something to...well...believe in. I don't think it's limited to just runners, but to people as a whole. And if that whole description didn't leave you a bit weepy, here's their Ironman Triathalon video, "Redeemer." Take the 5 minutes to watch this. It's what I think about when my legs are aching on that last mile of a Saturday long run and I feel like I just can't do it anymore. If they can do it, I can do it. And so can you.
I'm confident I will run the Boston Marathon in 2013 now. I don't think there's anything I want more right now than to do that. And I hope that I will have the chance to run side by side with Dick and Rick. Who knows? Maybe I can run for Team Hoyt next year. You never know...
Happy weekend everyone!