Emilia’s first race

Emilia and Alex

Emilia and Alex

Emilia run today her first running race. A big event for her as much as for her dad, of course!

How it all started… Emilia was interested in my evening runs, and wanted to join in. So, Ula has bought her snickers, and she came with me one day to run around the block (1km). We did half walk, half run then. Later, she came again once or twice, and another time we tried a longer distance, 2km. On every run she got side-stitch and we had to walk for a while. Given that she enjoyed the time, the idea was born for her to participate in the Outram 2km kids race. We tried to practice, but the reality was that we only run twice for the practice. Despite the lack of the preparation Emilia signed up on Saturday. At 4 years and 9 months she was one of the youngest kids that signed up. The day turned out to have pretty awful weather. It was drizzling and cold. With hot hearts and great spirits, we have turned out with the whole family at the start. Tony and Kirsten with their kids were there, too. Alex, Emilia’s friend decided to run  as well, and, inspired by her older sister, Danny has also decided to run on the day!

There were 50 kids in total on the start line. The race is for kids under 12 years old, and most were on the older side. All the older kids grouped in the first row, with the youngest staying a bit behind. And they went.

Outram start

Outram start

Tony was assisting Alex, I run with Emilia, and Kirsten with Danny. Alex had quite a fast start, which turn out quite nerve wrecking for Emilia, who couldn’t keep up. Emilia bursed into tears and with a little hysteria, we had to stop to have a little chat and cuddle. Everyone was gone by the time we started running again, including Danny. 2km is a pretty long distance for smaller kids, and most of them are incapable of pacing themselves accordingly. They run a bit too fast, then had to walk, then run again, and walk again. Emilia tried to keep a steady slowish pace instead, without the walking. We slowly caught up with the first few of the walking kids. Some started running and overtook us again. After we caught up with  Danny, Emilia’s confidence grew, and we tried to follow up Alex. Around the first kilometer we caught up with Alex who had to walk to have a bit of rest. We continued. Emilia had few problems with side stitches, and we had to slow down. She did run almost entire race without stopping. Well, we did stop on few occasions. Once, to fix the lace on the shoes, once to take the jersey off. Another time, when running around a playground, Emilia decided that it might be a great idea to just hop for few moments onto a swing. She stopped to check if that would be OK with me. I had to explain that the swing can wait and we can come back there later on, and that we need to just go on for a little more. And she did. We continued to run. Emilia was very pleased to see the finish line.

Emilia's finish
Emilia’s finish

It was a huge achievement to be able to run 2km. I think with just a little bit of practice, she might have enjoyed it even more. Stitches on both sides were causing some problems, and the weather was not so great. But, Emilia did finish, and has now a permanent record in the running history of the Outram hill free race!

The race has rather sentimental value for me, because it is the very first running race that I’ve even took part in. It was two years ago, and I still remember pretty vividly the event itself. Now, hopefully, we will share with her the memories of her and mine first ever running race. Lidia was a bit jealous and I’m sure she’d like to run with us next year. She did come for one practice too, and she she did very well, running around half a kilometer on her own. We will see…

Both, Alex and Danny finished the race too! Danny was very pleased, as he finished the race earlier than her older sister. It was great fun for everyone, and even though the weather could have been better, everyone enjoyed the day out. This year from the adults only Peter took part in the 10km race.

One thought on “Emilia’s first race

  1. Rob

    I loved reading this (especially the bit when you had to stop for a chat and a cuddle – priceless!). I have three kids of my own (two old enough to run some kind of race) and nothing has made me happier than crossing a finish line with one or both of them. I hope there are many more races ahead for all of us.

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