HONOR SERIES: September 11 and December 7
December 7 is PEARL HARBOR REMEMBRANCE DAY, the anniversary of the surprise attack on the US base in Hawaii on December 7, 1941. Many Americans lost their lives that day, like on September 11, but many more were destined to die in the next several years. Life drastically changed for the entire country as the US entered what would be called World War II. For my parents' generation plans for career, college, and marriage were altered overnight. My father joined the Army and my mother went to California to build airplanes. A search of the internet did not turn up any 2015 races with the theme of honoring the events of this day or those of both the December 7 and September 11 attacks. I will run a 7K race, to honor their memory, the second part of the Earned Runs Honor Series that began with a personal 11K race on September 11.
The main reason to establish Earned Runs was to enable individuals to design and run races that otherwise are not available, convenient, or affordable for participation. There are few or no widely held races commemorating these two specific days, and none that combine them, which could be identified by an internet search. The bibs allow runners to create events such as these.
The running of a themed race series or combination of races of different distances is gaining in popularity. Partly this is because the commitment to run more than one race "ups" the stakes for the individual runners, and partly because a special medal is awarded for finishing the separate races (that's a lot of hardware!). In my memory, the Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend in January each year gave the trend legs, offering a separate third medal for finishing both a marathon and half marathon that weekend. The medal for the "Goofy's Race and a Half Challenge" soon be came a coveted prize. Other "challenge" races have since been added by Disney, and some race festivals have followed Disney's lead.
Another example is the Marine Corps 17.75K that "commemorates the spirit of the U.S. Marine Corps and the year it was established", held in the spring of each year. All finishers (age 14+) receive a “Guaranteed Access” card ensuring a spot in the upcoming Marine Corps Marathon in the fall, a race that must use a lottery to select participants from the many that wish to run.
The quest for a medal or entry in a popular race are great reasons to commit to more than one race. But there can be other personal motivations. The possibilities are endless.
BRIDGE TO PHYSICAL SELF
Running, walking, and fitness activities enable us to experience our physical selves in a world mostly accessed through use of fingers on a mobile device.
EARNED RUNS is edited and authored by me, runner and founder. I began participating in road races before 5Ks were common. I've been a dietitian, practiced and taught clinical pathology, and been involved with research that utilized pathology. I am fascinated with understanding the origins of disease as well as health.
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