Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Track Star!!

This picture has nothing to do with the following text. In fact
you can ignore my stupid grin and just get going, if you'd like.

   Living in Eugene, Oregon, AKA Track Town USA, AKA Smells Like Pot has lots of wonderful things about it. One of those not-wonderful things is the fact that there's a marathon or 5K or half-marathon for pretty much every cause and every holiday every weekend.

   So, you have to do them. They are for a good cause. They fight hunger, or you walk for a cure, or you walk for heart disease. I've never really understood why anyone would be "for" heart disease but I am sure I am missing something. You can even shuffle for a truffle, which, I'm sure is something we should all support.

   Worse, everyone you know except for you has run a marathon. I can't tell you how sickening it is to see 100 status updates one morning that say something like "Can't believe I did it! Another one off the bucket list!" or "Wow am I tired but I sure feel good. Team Beat Insomnia did it!" (there's a half-marathon to fight insomnia. It starts at 2:00 am. I am lying.) or even "Just finished a marathon and I bet my ex Jordan is still on the couch getting fatter." (Get over it, Sam, you just look sad!) These people are running marathons and you're reading about it while eating cereal because you were too lazy to make pancakes. The only thing I've knocked off my bucket list lately is "spend a whole day in your underwear," which was actually kind of awkward because I had to take out the trash. I mean, how do you expect me to do a 5K!? Don't you know that it's five thousand!!

   Wyatt, however, that kid is going to run marathons, man.

   He can run, non stop, for hours. This is not an exaggeration. He's done it after church, running in circles around the gym, he's done it at this courtyard in town where we go to eat Fro-Yo, and just today he did it around the neighborhood.

   Sometimes we go to visit our friend, Marianne. She's not home a lot, but we stop by anyways. She lives at 1933 Roosevelt Street, which is exactly 0.8 miles from our house. Marianne, who has tons of nice stuff in her living room, wasn't there today around 9:15pm during our run, but that didn't matter to Wyatt because he wanted to go "pas," which is his adorable way of saying "fast." He says it all the time. "Mon da go pas!" (Come on dad go fast!) is easily his most used phrase, distantly followed by "oh car broke" (whenever he sees my broken down Buick Grandma which is for sale by the way only $6000), and "oh no ma wor oh no" (we are sad mom is at work). He turned around and ran home, which means he ran 1.6 miles tonight. Which means I ran 1.6 miles tonight. Which means heck yeah. Here, look at the Google Mapping I made:

Google Map of the route we took.

   His first sentence he ever said was "I gon ge goo!" which, loosely translated, means "I'm going to get you!" He yells it and then runs away from me, wanting me to chase him. He literally wants nothing more than to go pas all the time. When he's not going pas, he wants his cars to go pas or his choo choos to go pas. It's an obsession on par with Ricky Bobby.

   We decided to test out this need for speed, and took him to the last All Comers Meet at Historic Hayward Field. Since you might not live in a track-and-field-and-not-deodorant crazy town like I do, an All Comer's Meet is a track meet put on for anyone and everyone who wants to. A couple even have official enough time keeping to count towards things like national meets and Olympic Trial Qualifying.

   Wyatt went, and here's what happened:

We're in the middle of the screen. Wyatt's in the yellow-orange shirt, I am kneeling behind him giving him pointers. "Okay, now, it's a 40 meter race, so don't go too hard and wait for the other kids to get tired, then sprint hard at the end! If you *accidentally* trip another kid, that's all part of racing and winning and making dad proud."

The race has just started! You can tell because Cara put her finger in the screen a little.

What's the big hurry, kid in the red?! It's just for fun and we weren't even trying to win anyways.

   Just so you all know, I wasn't even going my fastest. If I'd wanted to win in that race I totally could've. It's just that my hamstring has been bothering me a bit lately.

   Once Wyatt really understood what a race was, he wanted to do it again, over and over. We would ready-set-go a few of these for him:

   There was also a long jump that Cara filmed. Well, "filmed" probably isn't the right term. It's more like she was "out looking for sasquatch" who is always in a blurry field.

   Thanks for that glorious, one-second video of Wyatt's first-ever-athletic venture, honey!

   He had a great time, and got a participation ribbon for all three of his events!! (Long jump, 40m dash, softball throw). I am usually totally against the whole "everyone gets a trophy" mentality, but I am all for the "Wyatt always gets a ribbon" craze that is sweeping the country. It will only make him tough and strong. Besides, winning isn't everything, if you lost. If you won, well, winning is obviously all that matters.

   Without really knowing it, I've actually been preparing him for races all along. I've spent the summer building up a little obstacle course in the back yard for Wyatt. It's really not much, it just has him running some loops and climbing some things, but he likes trying to do it faster and faster. Watch!

   My intention with this was actually to work on a few things: Counting (when he does the slalom at the start), shapes (I have him run around a circle, square, or triangle and say the shape each time), putting his face in the water (he's afraid to do it when in pools), climbing and jumping (he is hesitant if there are no cushions), and running under hammocks (self explanatory). There were other things I wanted us to do, like color or make animal sounds, but he just likes the "go pas" ones, so that's what it's turned into.

   Cara's always been afraid that Wyatt will love baseball, because she finds it so boring. I've always been afraid that he'll love math, because then he'll be so boring. Now we are wondering if he's just going to be one of those runners, who just runs all the time and doesn't really know how to throw a hatchet like all the other kids. Still, we're glad he's happy going pas and having fun.

My mood: Actually quite tired from that run. My hips kind of hurt. Ugh.
Wy's mood: Not at all tired from that run.
Cara's doing: Well. Not sleeping great, but that's mostly due to the fact that I am taking up the drums.
Listening to: Third Eye Blind

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