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The Long Run

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Greetings From The Booth!

There’s an old Dick Van Dyke Show episode where Dick’s character, Rob, is pleaded to by his wife Laura (played by the great Mary Tyler Moore) not to go skiing with his buddy Jerry. Rob goes anyway, and gets injured. To make a long story short, at the end of the episode, Rob says the only part of his body that isn’t hurt is the corner of his lip.

That’s exactly how I feel today, after yesterday’s Third Battle Of Winchester Half Marathon. At almost 65 years of age, I posted a respectable 2:06:32, which was good enough to win my age group (I won’t tell you that there weren’t many runners in the 60-plus category–a win is a win). But I’m paying the price today. Running 13.1 miles takes a toll on the body, and when we get older, things just naturally hurt. Still, I’m pleased with the effort, as I was able to shave 12 minutes off of last Summer’s time on the same course.

Although not a full marathon (I’m not quite ready for the 26.2 yet), the “half” is not only a physical challenge, but a mental one. There are going to be several points in that distance where you’ve got to fight off that little voice that says things like, “Oh, go ahead and quit. No one is going to care.” Or, “stop and walk for a bit. You’re almost 65, everyone will understand.” There were a few of those moments yesterday, and I was able to battle through them and complete my third half-marathon. I’m sure there will be more, but today, I don’t want a rematch.

What got me through yesterday’s race was the tremendous support I had from my friends at Dakota’s Dream Animal Rescue, a small no-kill organization based in Winchester, that relies totally on donations and volunteers. Alicia, Ken, and the folks from Dakota’s Dream came to my rescue several years ago when I found a litter of cats in the woods near my home, and last year I wanted to repay them by running my first half-marathon to benefit them. Thanks to lots of generous people, we raised $4300 to help a really cool cat named Liam (who is living the good life these days).

This year, I ran to benefit a special needs kitty named Lily, and my “fan club” from Dakota’s Dream came out to the race to cheer me on with posters and loud voices, on a wet, cool morning. That support helped get me through the aches and pains yesterday, as we were able to raise approximately $3000 for Lily and Dakota’s Dream. So, thanks to the good work that Dakota’s Dream does, and thanks to those of you who donated to the cause over the last several weeks. If you want to continue to help this fine organization please visit https://dakotasdream.org or visit them on Facebook.

Now, where’s the ibuprofen?

Until next visit from The Booth…Go Lily!

RW

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