“I hate running”
Those were the first words that I muttered to myself during my first ever
collegiate cross country 5K time trial my sophomore year at my university. It
was awful. I wanted to throw up the entire time. The coach had picked me up
when I asked him about doing some extra trails around school on my own. I
didn’t even know what I was getting myself into. First practice of the season,
and we are running 3.1 miles as fast as we can. I was terrified and nervous and
ready for failure. Not even halfway through someone threw up and another girl
was limping. I looked at this and decided that my odds weren’t very good. I was
feeling okay, but still nervous. I ended up doing just fine for my first ever
time trial, but this season I know was going to challenge me in more ways than
one. The speed workouts were crazy; the long runs were, well, long and the
expectations were very high.
Ever since I could remember, I was always expected to do so well in my sports.
I always had so much pressure to do well and be the best one, get first and
bring home the trophy. My family is very competitive and that really put
pressure on me to always do well. My dad was very supportive of me and
everything that I put my mind to. He was there for all of the soccer practices
and games. He always came with some other kind of support system like my
grandmother and of course some kind of sports drink spiked with an energy
drink. So when I said that I wanted to join the cross country team at my
university, he of course was very supportive and welcoming to the idea of his
oldest daughter once again doing a sport.
My first year was full of so many trials. All I wanted to do was get better and
faster. I was always good at sports, so why couldn’t I pick this one up so
quickly? I always had to be reminded that progress in running doesn’t happen
overnight and make sure not to keep my head too high in the clouds. I was
always reminded to make reasonable goals that I could achieve in a decent
amount of time. Races were nerve-racking and more intense that I had ever
imagined. I threw up at the end of every single of them, so I always had that
to look forward to. When it got to the middle of the season, I started to go to
some of our assistant coach’s ultra-marathon races, it was amazing. Seeing
people do this as a profession became something so new to me. I was excited,
because naturally I wanted to be just as fast and strong as they are. So I
focused in my training and before long, I was improving and getting better. I
started my season with a time of 25:20 and ended with a 22:40.
I just ended my second season of cross country ever and it was a season that I
will never forget. I learned so much about myself and what I wanted to do with
my future with athletics. I learned more about the sport, and am excited to
attain more knowledge daily from my coaches and teammates. I finished the
season with a 21:33. A minute and seven seconds faster than last year. Only a
year has gone by and I have been able to improve that much. I’m still of course
upset that I didn’t break 21 minutes, but I have come to learn that running
isn’t something that just happens; it takes dedication and constant work to be
fast. With this upcoming track season in mind I have to remember that this is
only my second year; And not to have the big expectations that I always put on
myself because that won’t help me in this sport. This isn’t like soccer, a
sport that I had played for fifteen years, this is something completely new,
and something my dad doesn’t even understand. Running opens up so may doors and
gives me the opportunity to enjoy being active and fit. I can happily say
that I love to run and looking back, I laugh at myself for ever saying
About the author:
Justine Kruger, is a student
at William Jessup University in Rocklin, Ca. studying adolescent psychology. She is active and enjoys the out doors. She just
recently started running. She is thankful to God for her health and has a
desire to share her new found passion for running.
It is that time of year that people start thinking about getting active. If you are in the DesMoines area I would encourage you to take the first step and sign up for The Springtime Hill Climb 5/10k then check out our 10 week couch to 5k running plan. You can do this.
This is a spring time race through the streets and trails of Pleasant Hill. Don’t be intimidated by the name, although as most Iowa runs, there are some hills. It is primarily named the Hill Climb because of the location, not the elevation.
TIME & LOCATION:
• Date: Saturday April 11, 2015
• Time: 8am
• Doanes Park
• 5k course
• 10k course (USATF certified)
• Kid’s Dash (free)
• (there is a $3 discount for all groups over four registered prior to 3/28)
• $25 Early Bird Rate (before midnight 3/14)
• $30 Regular Rate (before midnight 3/28)
• $35 Walk-On Rate (4-8pm on 4/10 at the Health Fair or from 7-7:30 race day at Doanes Park.
• No Refunds
PDF mail-in registration forms will be available at a later date PACKET PICK-UP/Walk-On Registration:
4 to 7 PM Friday, April 10
Doanes Park Youth Center, 5050 Doanes Park Road, Pleasant Hill, IA 50327
7:00-7:30 AM April 11
Doanes Park, 5050 Doanes Park Rd, Pleasant Hill, IA 50327
Parking: Doanes Park is located at 5050 Doanes Park Rd, Pleasant Hill, IA 50327 and there will be parking provided in the park through the south entrance off 6th Ave.
Shirts: All pre-registered participants will receive a performance running shirt. Shirts are not guaranteed for walk-ons.
Post-race refreshments: Will be provided by Pleasant Hill Fareway and Anderson & Erickson.
Awards: Sports Page $100 gift cards will be given to overall 1st place runners in male and female in both 5k and 10k; plus medals to the top 3 places in each of the age groups. Only one award per person. Photographer: There will be race pictures available for purchase. Paul Nye from Panfoto will be on the course and you will receive an e-mail with a link to download your race pictures about one week after the race.
Charity: ALL proceeds go to “FREEDOM FOR YOUTH,” a faith based non-prophet offering hope and direction to at-risk youth in central Iowa.
Support Team Freedom: This year our charity, Freedom for Youth, will have a team of young runners running the Hill Climb and we have set up a fund to show them our support.
Kid’s Dash: The Kid’s Dash will follow the 10k. It is a free, noncompetitive fun run. This event is free to children ages 1 to 10, but they must be registered. You can do so on race day. All participants will receive a participant ribbon for the following distances.
VOTE for healthy living by
walking a 1k (.62 mile) on the Copper Creek trail in Pleasant Hill as part of
the Healthiest State Walk on Oct. 8th at Noon.
Iowans across the
state have shown their support for the Healthiest State Initiative by the
thousands. By the hundreds of thousands, actually – each year for the past
three years, nearly 300,000 Iowans have participated in 1-kilometer walks to
show that we’re ready for a healthier Iowa.
As they approach their
fourth year, we as citizens and businesses of Pleasant Hill plan to do our part
to keep the momentum going and make this year’s walk the biggest one yet. Be
part of the movement by walking one kilometer (.62 miles or roughly 12 minutes)
on October 8 at Pleasant Hill’s Lunch Lap at the Lake.
This is a free event
but we ask that everyone sign up to cast their vote for a healthier Iowa.
Talk the Walk is also
being offered this year, it is a contest where people can receive Hy-Vee gift
cards for recruiting others for their walks. For every person who is
successfully recruited, both the recruiter and the recruitee will be entered
into a drawing for one of several Hy-Vee gift cards