KiDS ROCK Race : Our first medal!
When I signed up for my second half marathon, I saw that the Rock ‘n’ Roll series also offered a KiDS ROCK race for Kindergarten-7th grade. The Kindergarten race was 1/2 mile. I thought it was a great introduction to running for my son! We could train together, and he could experience his first race.
KiDS ROCK give you lots of resources to help prepare and train. My son liked looking through the training plan on their website and trying to marry it up with the plan I was following for my race. We set out with intentions of following the 8 week plan, but ended up condensing quite a bit. I was really happy to see the variety of activities offered under the plan. We could try something different each time.
We included a lot of walks together on our road, adding in slow jogs. He also takes a Ninja Warrior class every week that helped with conditioning. On a separate note, we saw him blow everyone away in the push-up competition at Boy Scouts! The Ninja Warrior class has definitely paid off.
The actual race start time was changed on the day-of due to some impending weather events in Nashville. This meant we showed up a little later than we wanted, but still made it in time for the last Kindergarten corral. We saw lot of schools running together. The majority, however, seemed to be kids whose parents had participated the day before in the 5K/marathon/half-marathon.
Documenting the Race
My husband, the tech guru, had the GoPro on a chest strap so we could watch the entire race later. My son did get lots of high-fives and “that’s awesome” from the other parents when they saw him running up with the GoPro strapped on! The best part by far, however, was getting to watch the video over with him and seeing him relive the pride he had in his speedy finish. I stood at the starting line with him to document the take-off, and had my own little race back to the finish line.
I watched him take off, not remembering a bit of the talks we had about pacing. He was going to win this thing! It lasted about half way before he got tired and slowed down to a walk. About 10 steps from the finish line, he rocketed back up, and we saw his little hands turn into blades on the GoPro.
The people at the Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon series are great about documentation and pictures. We had a ton to choose from after the race was over, but my favorite was when he received his medal. He was shocked that it was real metal! This medal is the real deal, with a place to engrave his name and time on the back.
Addicted to the Race
On our way home, we were already planning our next races. He asked if he could hang his bib and his medal on the same holder I have for mine, to which my answer was a big “YYEESSS!” I saw him go through all the emotions I do at a race. In his little half-mile, I saw myself : Excitement on the way to the race, a little doubt when he was standing on that starting line, the “I’ve got this” feeling when his corral was released, the disappointment when he had to walk and didn’t do as well as he wanted, and the joy when he got his medal and realized he accomplished his goal.
The day before, I had a major disappointment and DNFed on my half marathon. It was a combination of a lot of things, but it mostly came down to training. It was a hard lesson for me, but a good lesson for my kids in the importance of preparation and always trying your best. Watching the excitement he had when he crossed the finish line set the fire under me again. I want that feeling back, and I can’t wait to sign up for our next race together.
To make it even better, he made it on the news!! Watch this kid take off from the start line!