SATURDAY IS RACE DAY!
AN AMERICAN TO EMULATE. Okay you may be sooooo over the Olympics by now. However as our nation’s athletes and those of the rest of the globe have spent at least 4 years, sometimes much longer, preparing to provide the world with exciting original-content entertainment for 14 days, a recap of their special accomplishments seems appropriate. Before we move on to the new TV season’s shows.
Competitor.com put together 2 slideshow articles that are easy to move through. One, 31 slides in length, “US Track and Field Storms to Huge Success at the Rio Olympics” says what many may not realize; this Olympic event was, for the US Track & Field Team, a GREAT showing. The best since 1932! This slideshow mostly honors USA medal winners.
The second slideshow, “10 Amazing Running Moments at the Rio Olympics” by Brian Metzler, is 11 slides in length and highlights memorable instances of athletic performance and sportsmanship by USA and other nations’ champions in running and field events. Some moments received a lot of play by the media; others, not so much. What comes to my mind is 41 year-old American Meb Keflezighi’s run in the men’s marathon foot race.
Meb dropped back in the race before reaching the halfway mark. It seems he started to experience gastrointestinal distress at that point and had to stop several times, but was able to complete the remainder of the distance. Just before crossing the finish line, as he was acknowledging the crowd’s cheers in probably his last Olympic performance, he slipped on wet pavement and unceremoniously went down. He kissed the ground and gamely performed several push-ups before getting to his feet. It was a bit like 73 year-old actor Jack Palance at the 1992 Academy Awards show, receiving an Oscar for his role as Curly in the “City Slickers” movie, showing his vitality by doing several one-handed push-ups on stage as he accepted his award. In the post race interview he emotionally expressed his gratitude for our country and all it had given him and his family. He was so proud to have his 3 daughters witness his participation in the marathon as a representative of the US. It was a Kleenex moment. What an athlete and a patriot!
Meb could have focused on coming in 33rd place and not medalling, the slick conditions of the course from rain, or the likelihood his ‘stomach problem’ was due to poor food safety or drinking water in the host country. But he chose to bring attention to all that was good in his life and this effort. It surely was a teachable moment for young and old, and recreational and professional competitors on good sportsmanship.
To me he was showing us all how to ‘RUN HAPPY’!
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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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