I started running when I was 8 years old, with my mom. She said she could tell I had a knack for it, so she started bringing me along on her daily three mile runs. We trained during my brother’s soccer practices, and she’d ask me about my day as she led me around our suburban routes. I would cut corners and cul-de-sacs and complain, but she kept getting me out there day after day. We ran local 5ks together in the spring, which was my favorite part.
When I started cross country in high school and got more serious about running, we learned about the sport together. She knew all my times, all my competitors, and even all the online message board gossip of the Texas high school track scene.
She was there at every high school race, driving me to the ends of the earth (Ok, the Woodlands) when I was a homeschool kid with no team.
She was there at every college race that didn’t require a plane trip (and some of those too), cheering loud enough for me to pick her voice out of the crowd at an indoor track stadium.
She’s still there now, coming to watch me run my road races. I’m on Rogue AC, a professional / post-collegiate group based here in Austin. Mom holds my bag and water and gives me a good luck kiss at the start.
Mom still runs too. She’s on her steady 5 days-a-week plan, waking up at 5 a.m. and running in the dark to get her mileage in. On Saturdays she sleeps in until 7, and I get to cheer for her starting her long run.
Running has been a consistent thread in my life for the last 15 years and so has my mom’s support. Cliché but true – wouldn’t be where I am without her.
A very happy mother’s day to you, Mom.