They're Still Cheering Me On.

by - 3/30/2010

Once upon a time,

I was a member of a Cross Country running team.

In the beginning it was hard. I could barely run a mile without huffing and puffing.

Soon, however, I got the hang of it. And though I wasn't the fastest,
or the strongest,
or the amazing-est,
I could finish a race.

My dad supported me 100%. He was at nearly every meet, standing on the sidelines cheering me on, and taking about a thousand pictures of me with his gigantic camera.

He even paid for some excellent shoes that supported my feet and relieved my shin splints.

The best part about cross country by far was being a member of a team.

Even though a team of runners is a bit different than, say, a soccer team, being a part of this team was an incredible experience. We all ran individually, but we were in it together. It boosted my confidence so much when each time I rounded a corner my friends and teammates were there, cheering their hearts out for me no matter how slow I was going. We became the best of friends through the countless practices, bus rides, our treks around the tracks to cheer for our friends.

Now that it's been over a year since I've participated in this sport, I realize just how much I miss it. Running on my own just isn't the same. There's no one to push me but me. But I like to pretend that as soon as I round that next corner, my friends will all be waiting there screaming, yelling, clapping; telling me not to give up, to keep on going, that I can do this.

I learned so many valuable lessons as a runner. Lessons that I can apply to all aspects of my life, not just when I lace up my shoes and begin the run. I learned to push myself harder than I ever have before, I learned that if it's my best it's good enough, and that if I keep going even when it hurts, it will be worth it in the end. Oh how I miss being a part of this sport! It had such a huge impact on my life and it's a time I will never forget.

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