Nothing is more rewarding than having my daughter throw on her light-up princess sneakers and sprint around the house saying, "I'm running fast like Mommy!" One of the main reasons I run is to instill in her the importance of being strong and healthy. I don't want June to relate exercise to how she looks. Instead, I want her to engage in physical activity because she likes how it feels, it makes her strong and healthy, and she really enjoys it! So, each time I hear her ask if she can run a race with Mommy, it fills my heart with such joy.
She is such a great help and motivator to me! She's been right there with me, smack dab in the middle of my training, ever since she was born. I started pushing her in the jogging stroller as an infant, and continued until earlier this year when I worked out a brilliant sitter situation (best running friends have baby-sitting age children). She's been my biggest fan at nearly all of my races. Nothing gets me to the finish line faster than seeing my sweet baby girl waving her arms and shouting, "Run faster Mommy!" When she wakes up in the morning, she asks me if I had a good run. If I skipped it, her face will fall and she'll ask, "Does Mommy not like running anymore?" She'll look so sad that I will have to find some way to still exercise that day. She's only three and is a master at the guilt trip. She helps me pick out new running gear and clothes--her favorite part is choosing the colors, which are usually in the pink/purple family. She even likes to recommend songs for my running playlist, but I just don't think I could handle listening to the Mickey Mouse Clubhouse soundtrack anymore than I already hear it.
Each night before I go to bed, I set out my running clothes for the next morning. Now, June will join me and help me pick out which outfit I should run in. She takes such pride in this as she meticulously considers each top and bottom, trying to find the perfect combination. Even better, she has a natural talent for ensuring the outfits are cute and coordinated. If you follow my blog, you'll know that wearing cute and coordinated running clothes is one of the biggest motivators that keeps me lacing up and running out the door regularly. She definitely has a gift.
|Telling me all about her favorite temple, the Oakland California Temple.|
I love that June is wanting to share in one of my biggest passions. But this is my dream, and if she doesn't share it, that's alright. She can do whatever she has a passion for, and I'll always be there to support her and cheer her on. Still, how awesome it would be to run with her, to train with her, and to race with her. Even now, running a short distance race with her (or holding her through part of it) is one of my favorite ways to bond with her and to grow closer with her. June is eagerly anticipating our next race as a family, the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure in September. We are running to honor the memory of my mother, aunt, grandfather, and uncle. I'll be competing in the 5K, then joining her on the mile fun run with my brothers and my dad. She's been asking me daily, "Can we run the race today?" Yeah, she's my favorite person. Running has helped me see how blessed I am, both on the road and in the home.