Quote Of The Day
“The boy is running hard, his breathing loud and choppy. He sees his mother up ahead, standing at the spot on the asphalt path that marks the end of the lap. She’s looking at the stopwatch in her hand. If he beats his personal best, even by a second, practice will end and there might be a reward. An ice cream or a burger, maybe. If he’s slower, he’ll have to run around the park again. He hates those penalty runs, but at age 7, he doesn’t dare challenge his mother. … She shouts, ‘Three minutes, 34…35…36,’ and each second declared propels him faster. When he finally reaches her, he collapses on the grass. Bits of twigs and dirt stick to his sweaty arms and legs as he rolls around on the ground and tries to calm his breathing. But soon his mother is shouting again. ‘What are you doing lying down there?’ It’s time for a penalty lap. … His task each day was to best his personal record; if he was up to 30 seconds off, he had to run an extra lap. If he was a minute off, two laps. If he was consistently slow, he would have to walk the nearly two miles home alone.”
– Excerpt from a profile by Kumiko Makihara on Japanese “citizen runner” and LRC hero, Yuki Kawauchi, talking about his start in running as a 7-year-old coached by his mother. The article goes on to cover his transformation from injured/burnt out high schooler to a 2:08 marathoner and his life as a pro. A must-read.
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