Saturday, June 12, 2010

Gordon Ferguson Yackle .10K Run for Parkinson's Disease

My first "race" of the season was last Saturday.  (Note, the word "race" is quite a stretch of the imagination.)  This was a .10K run benefiting research and awareness for Parkinson's disease.  Let me repeat that.... a POINT 10K race.  That's like 1/2 a block.  What? Yeah, it's an incredibly silly and fun race my cousins organized.    All participants are encouraged to enjoy a few pre-race energy drinks and pizza to prime you for the run.  And when I say pre-race drink, that means it has alcohol content.  Once the participants were on the way to being "loaded", all 350+ participants were herded down the street to the starting line--sort of like Ironman Racine 70.3 a couple years ago**.

 Me, my Dad, and Reg--pre-race

Interesting enough, the walk to the start point was longer than the run itself.  You could just feel the energy and excitement in the air as we awaited the start of the race. I looked down the street and was shocked to see the finish line still well within my sight.  Really....that's what .10K looks like?  The gun went off (actually, my cousin just said "go"), and we all started running.  Smiles, I saw lots of smiles.  At the half way point, another one of my cousins offered me a banana and a small bottle of water.  "Keep hydrated", they yelled.   I ran and before I knew it, the race was over...literally.  I laughed as I crossed the finish and then I laughed some more. No medals, ribbons, results, or prizes were given out. But, our post-race "drinks" were waiting for us at the finish line.

Reg, Dave, Ed and Me

Last year, there was a guy who completed it in a scuba diving gear outfit.  Nice.  This year, I saw a guy run with his pet parrot.  No kidding.

If there is one thing I take away from this race, it is this:

Have fun...have fun while you race, have fun while you train, have fun in your life!

Because there are many people, like my Aunt Carol who is challenged every day of her life as she deals and struggles with Parkinson's Disease.  Not every one can run, or walk for that matter, just a short point 10K distance.  So don't get mad if you didn't make your goal time when you cross that finish line.  Smile because you did it.  Smile because you were able to do it!  And if you don't finish,  smile because you at least tried!   You know that old is you better have fun and enjoy it!

My cousin Scott and my Aunt Carol

Tomorrow, I will be "racing" (said, very loosely), in the Naperville Women's Sprint Tri.  I hope to be smiling every stroke, pedal, and step along the way....for my Aunt Carol.

**Ironman Racine 70.3 2008--The swim was canceled due to ridiculous rough waves....we had to walk to the new start of the race (run, bike, run).  Thousands of racers were  herded down the street like cows.  All we needed was our cowbells.  They do this in Switzerland with their cows...I've actually seen it.

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