12 October 2011

Kyra and Cross Country Regionals

This afternoon, Tim and I had the opportunity to see Kyra compete in a regional cross country meet from Logan High School. This may not seem like such a big deal, but there is definitely more to this story.

As long as I've known Kyra, she has despised running. I don't mean disliked...I mean hated running with every fiber of her being. Any time the topic of running came up, her mood turned immediately sour. So, I'm sure you can imagine our surprise when Kyra came home at the beginning of the school year to tell us that she had joined the cross country team.

I couldn't believe it. What in the world was she thinking?!? Why in the world would anyone who truly despises running join a running team?!? Especially the CROSS COUNTRY team?!? Tim and I talked about it. He said that if that's what she wanted to do, then let her do it, but she was not allowed to quit.

So, over the past several weeks, Kyra has been staying after school to run. She doesn't run fast. In fact, she is the slowest runner on her team. However, she has continued to train and work hard. Last week, we saw her run at a meet at SkyView High School. She came in last place and was even lapped by the guys.

Over the weekend, Kyra was super wound up and worrying about the meet today. She was putting all sorts of pressure on herself (unnecessarily) and was actually pretty difficult to be around. She kept talking about running well today. I decided to share a story with her.

When I was in 10th grade, I had a friend talk me into trying out for the softball team. I didn't really like softball. I was already playing volleyball and basketball and it was kinda nice to have the spring off. She really didn't want to go to tryouts by herself, so she convinced me to just go with her and I, being the super nice friend that I am, said, "Sure." Well, she didn't make the team, but I did. I have no idea how. My first year, I rode the pine. My batting average was .000. I didn't play hardly ever. Seriously... However, I worked hard and showed up and cheered like a crazy person. My second year, I was playing first base and if I remember correctly, I started every game. My batting average went up, but still wasn't great. I had improved tremendously. My senior year, I batted over .400 and was on the state all-star team. I explained to Kyra that you don't get good in one season. Performing better requires lots of hard work and dedication and determination. It requires stick-to-it-tivness.

Kyra is one of the most stubborn people that I know; although I still have her beat. The tricky thing is that she typically doesn't use her stubborn powers for good. She told me that she wants to become a better runner. She wants to lose weight and become faster. I told her that I could help her do that...but she can't expect it to happen overnight...or in one week, or in one season. If this is what she wants, then she's going to have to spend MONTHS working towards it. This is when she decided that she wants to do the Ogden 1/2 Marathon in May 2012.

Fast forward to today...we saw Kyra before the start. Her and her friend Harriet barely made it to the start when the gun went off. The rest of the girls took off and Kyra was in last place. I went back to the car to get the super cute flowers we got for Kyra (gorgeous red gerber daisies and yellow tiny mums that looked like miniature sunflowers). I caught Kyra walking, so I yelled at her "Get going!" Then I went and found Tim. We waited for Kyra and we waited for Kyra and we waited for Kyra. There were girls finishing the race and we hadn't seen Kyra yet at all. We started to wonder if she quit. How was it taking so long?

Then we saw her...jogging along. She kept going and she even pushed herself up this hill.

She jogged past us on the road.

She headed out for the rest of her run. Tim and I yelled to her "don't quit" and I yelled "no more walking". We headed back towards the center of the course to wait for her to run by. I'm pretty sure that she got lost, which has happened in all of her races this year, because next thing we know, she comes up to us and has been finished "for awhile." She may or may not have cut the course short.

The moral of this long story is that Kyra didn't quit. She did something that was SUPER HARD for her. She stuck with it. She even wants to run cross country again next year. And she wants to train for a 1/2 marathon. I can't wait to start the training... *insert evil laugh*

Needless to say, we are SO PROUD of her! She proved to herself that SHE CAN DO HARD THINGS! What a great thing to be able to say about herself! I think that the feeling of self worth that comes from running (or whatever challenging activity you enjoy) will always always always improve your view of yourself. I'll be sure and provide updates on how her running is improving.


Barb said...

Congrats to Kyra!