News & Observations
By Dana Stetson
In the last six months, I have been trying a new type of running. This kind of running is far tougher than any I have attempted before. What kind of extreme sport are we talking here?
I have entered the action-packed arena of family running. My wife and daughter have finally fallen prey to my personal philosophy “a family that runs together, funs together.” We have custom designed a family fun run plan that seems to work for us. We start at the Forest Meadows Lake Overstreet trailhead. Myself and my faithful wonderdog, Lucky Holly, will head in one direction while Susan and Danice head in the other. This allows each team to proceed at their own preferred pace. Because the trail is a loop, we have to meet at some point. When we meet, I either hand over the dog to both of them, or take my daughter into tow with me. This design depends on how everyone is doing. If I proceed ahead alone, then I can try and meet them as far up the trail as possible. If I run/walk with my daughter we can spend some time together. This arrangement seems to work out for all of us.
The dog gets to run more, which she likes. My wife gets to run some and can have some quiet time in the woods when she chooses. My daughter gets more time to run which she sometimes likes and more time to walk in the woods, which she almost always likes (except when its hot, cold, buggy, drippy, or a few other conditions. Even when she doesn’t have a great time, she at least gets some exercise and more importantly, sees that her parents are interested in staying fit.
The example will be remembered long after the words are forgotten. This time spent in planning, and actually doing these runs, is sometimes hard to find. But, it is well worth it when it does work out. The time spent together in the woods together is very well spent. With individual schedules, outside events, and sometimes unacceptable weather conditions, you simply have to try to go when you can manage it. Although these family runs are a small amount of my weekly mileage, I truly look forward to them as a big part of my week.