Today marked the end of this year’s running program at Indian River School. With thirty-five kids on the roster and only two coaches, I would be remiss if I didn’t say that things did not always go as smoothly as possible. While the inaugural fall program went by with flying colors, the spring was a bumpy ride. Behavioral issues and refusal to run plagued the group, as well as administrative disconnect with the school office lead to great learning moments as I had to reevaluate how to conduct practice. It seemed like every practice there were new problems and everyday I went home to rack my brain on how to solve the current ailment. But even with the headaches, the steep learning curve, and having to explain why fist fighting is not allowed, the program was a lot of fun. It was great to witness the kids deepen their love for running and continue to challenge and surprise themselves. Watching the final race today, one particular girl was fighting tough, even panting: “I feel like I am going to die” as she neared the end of the four mile race. Worried that I might have frightened her away with her longest race yet, I was stunned to receive an email from her mother later in the day stating how the girl’s next goal was to run a half marathon in the fall and wanted to know proper ways to train for such a long distance. Being able to share my passion for running with the middle schoolers, while tough at times, has been extremely rewarding and fun. With the first year of the program now complete- and many hurdles cleared- I look forward to next year to be able to continue my involvement with Indian River. Thank you ITA and Amory for the ability and opportunity to share my passion of sport to others, it has been a great experience and look forward to the continued adventure.
Until next time,