The following entry was written by Mike Cannon, our Gandalf-skilled public relations wizard:
Most members of running clubs have or will run in an organized race or two. Maybe it is only a local 5K or Turkey Trot or maybe it’s the Boston Marathon. Some cost almost nothing to enter, while others cost a small fortune. But the one thing they all have in common is that they absolutely rely on volunteers. Without them, there would be no amateur road races. They perform functions behind the scenes and in your face. Some volunteer before or after the race and some during. They hand out water and they pick up trash. They cheer on runners and they tabulate results.
I will never forget my first marathon, particularly when I neared mile 22 and I was spent. It took all of my focus just to continue to put one foot in front of the other. It was then that a volunteer saved the day. He jumped in front of me and pointed to my left just as I was about to run past a six-foot tall sign with a big red arrow on it pointing left boldly emblazoned with “Runners Turn Here.” I would have kept running straight (after all, it was such a tiny sign, how could they expect me to see it?) and been off course for who knows how long.
After that race and because of that one guy, I decided that for every four races I run, I would volunteer at one. It seemed like a fair trade and, quite honestly, most non-runners aren’t interested in races enough to even watch and much less volunteer. So it is up to us runners to support each other. Volunteering has been a rewarding experience and I definitely have a better appreciation for race volunteers now.
So I encourage you to volunteer at a race once in a while. Who knows, you might just be that person who keeps some knucklehead like me on course and gets written about in a blog.
The following entry was written by Jennifer Rokasky, our supernaturally gifted and organized registrar:
So I started running with the RidgeRunners back in July 2011. I am a teacher and since the school year has started, I’m finding it more and more difficult to schedule my running and workouts. So now I’m making an appointment for myself. The idea popped in my head recently. It was a long week of work. The last run I did was on Sunday and it was now Thursday. I really didn’t want to go to for the run, I had grading to do, lesson plans to make, websites to update, well the list just seems to go on and on throughout the school year. So with the encouragement of a coworker, I went to the 5:30 speed work and 6:00 run. It was hard, but I was glad I did it!
Since January, I managed to lose 40 lbs. This was through proper eating and working out regularly, but I haven’t been doing a regular workout since school started again. So my plan is now to make an appointment to work out and run. It’s so easy for people to get sidetracked by work, friends, and family. But now, I am making an appointment with myself to go for that run or to do that workout. Because I have to take care of myself first, there will always be a time to catch up with other things. When you work out, whether it is running or strength training, you know you always feel better afterwards.
So join me in making an appointment to run with the Lake Ridge RidgeRunners on a Sunday, Tuesday, or Thursday…or better, all three!