Thursday, June 2, 2011

At the Races

Sports were not my thing as a child/teenager/young adult/person. It may have something to do with the time I was playing goalie for my fifth-grade soccer team and my jersey got caught on the goal post, so I watched helplessly as our opponents trotted the ball down to score. Or maybe it was when I bit my tongue about halfway through the mile run during field day as a seventh grader and I ended up swallowing my own blood for two more laps around the track. I did like my middle school P.E. teacher, though, who recognized my natural inabilities and offered to give me an A in the volleyball unit if I could just bump the ball to myself 20 times in a row. I barely passed that test after several attempts, and she just pretended like I could spike, serve, etc. like everyone else who passed. Sports were just not my thing. (Though I did like badminton.)

So I was surprised when three of my children wanted to be on running teams this year. #1 joined the cross-country team last fall and ran a 5K, beating more than half the adults in the same race. This spring, #s 2 and 4 asked to join the school's track team. I figured they'd have to learn about their genetic incapacities sooner or later, so why not let them get some exercise in the process? Last week were their track meets. Imagine my surprise to discover that we do have some athletes in the family!

#2 competed at the Hershey Track and Field Meet last Wednesday, which was open to youth from all over the county, mostly Provo. She was up against some tall 12-year-olds, and though they beat her at running, she placed 6th out of many more than that in the standing long jump.

I was most proud that she stepped up and ran the relay after getting pretty shaken by the 200-meter dash. Truly, she is more a long-distance runner than a sprinter. Up against her peers at school, she ended up with a handful of ribbons, including a first place in something.

#4 is the one who blew me away. At the school's track meet for the younger team members, I helped record measurements at the long jump, and so didn't get to see her compete in all her events. When ribbons were handed out, her name was called again and again. Looks like we have a good little softball chucker/runner/jumper on our hands.

That's #4 at the head of the pack of dashing seven-year-olds.

So what does the rest of the family do at a long track meet? We all found ways to entertain ourselves.

#3 played with her food, which oddly resembled a favorite Provo landmark. (That's a carrot.)

#5 played on the playground...and made a playground out of the long-jump sand pit. (He was quite proud of his sand booster seat.)

#4 convinced Edwin to be her human monkey bars so she could practice flips.

#1 chatted it up with the boys...and then took them on to help them warm up for their events.

And I played with my camera, getting some good shots of my athletes and their coaches. Good job girls!


Carolyn said...

Oh, that same pe teacher had to spend extra time with me, teaching me to throw a football, hit a volleyball, etc. I'll bet she didn't mind when we moved and she didn't have to deal with any more of us.

Paul said...

My first reaction after reading your blog was pangs of guilt for being a neglectful parent and not doing more sports with you. But no, I coached soccer, and we attempted to play other sports as a family. Welcome to the gene pool.

Sounds like you do have some mutants, however -- or are they getting their athletic prowess from their father's line?

Mary said...

Definitely mutants. I'm pretty sure there isn't much athletic ability on their father's side, though marching around through high school and college with a sousaphone on one's shoulder should count for something.

VickieG said...

These White girls rock!