I titled this post with an intentional play on words. When you think of dedication and ultra running one would think of the before sunrise grinds, the obscene amount of hours training and the relentless push to build strength and endurance. Somewhere, tucked neatly behind the common conversations we have with our fellow ultra runners are the people that really truly matter in our day to day lives. The people that make us tick, the people that motivate us to be better. It may be your parents, your husband, your kids, a friend. Might be a sad story or a happy uplifting one that drives us. There are many, many reasons to be grateful for the gift of running and no better time than when you are putting it all out there next weekend at the Blackfoot Ultra to dedicate portions of the run to those that mean so much in your life. On a race course, same in life, nothing less than a full and complete effort would do, so here is who I'm running for on May 24th:
Lap 1: Sharon (wife) "I'm lucky I'm in love with my best friend" reads a picture hanging in the Proctor house and I'm glad to say it's true. The first of 4 laps will be the joy of the day, feeling fresh and having fun. Sharon has a smile that will light up a room and during the first lap, so will I. While running I will be giving thanks to her for being so patient with me and as we all know the first quarter of a 100K patience is a virtue. Sharon will be at the finish line and I look forward to seeing her there.
Lap 2: Adele (daughter 3yrs) Our little ray of sunshine. Her favourite saying is "love you forever" and I hope she remembers that when she's a teenager. Between 25-50K one should keep the ball rolling and that's exactly what parenting a third child is all about. Don't get lazy, keep up the quality but know that with a little girl there are challenges ahead. Adele has a stead fast determination to keep up with her two older siblings, the fact that she is knee high to a grasshopper her spirit makes up for any shortcomings.
Lap 3: Sam (son 5yrs) Words can't describe how I feel about this little man. Sam is stricken with an undiagnosed Ataxic disorder making even simple movements difficult such as walking, feeding himself, writing, verbally being understood…but yet he never once in his life has ever complained about his unfortunate reality. I'm running 100K and complaining all throughout…there is something wrong here. He is my inspiration! Two years ago, on the third loop at Blackfoot was where I suffered the most, that will not happen again. when I start dropping into that dark place I will think of Sammy putting his shoes on, walking up stairs, brushing his teeth. Hell, all I have that's limiting me is lactic acid. The third lap will be a game breaker for me this year and Sam the man will be my driving force.
Lap 4: Julia (daughter 8) From the day she was born this little girl has stolen my heart. Julia is a go-getter in life and never shies away from taking on more responsibility around the house or with her younger siblings. The day she was born I became a man and the final lap of this race I'll have to man up and get 'er done. Julia has always been eager to show me how fast she can run and on May 24th I would love to show her that daddy killed it!