Today I had the pleasure of sharing a run. Company while running is a rarity for me, but I gladly accepted the request when two local college runners home over break called to see if I wanted to run.
I forgot how quickly time passes, even in the dead of winter, when you have someone to share the time with (or commiserate with). I led the guys on one of my standard morning routes. A simple run of eight miles, a mix of paved and dirt roads, and a good creek crossing. Although I have done this very loop over a hundred times, I had forgotten how enjoyable it is to share a run of "mine" with others that are running it for the first time with fresh eyes for the scenery and terrain. Today was different; mundanely cold, snowy, and blustery, but different. It was crossing a frozen creek, revealing an unknown side-road, and sharing a part of me that made it different.
During this morning's run I had a thought; this is why I love directing races. Directing a race is much more than months of organizing, clearing trail, ordering schwag, and making preparations. Directing a race is about sharing part of you; a trail and mountain that is intimately known and challenging runners to reach new heights upon it. I absolutely love seeing people reach new limits in life and running. The runner that is beaten down by their pursuit yet persists, crossing the finish line with tear-filled eyes only to match my warm handshake or hug with a priceless "thank you"....It means so much and is probably one of the most meaningful experiences for me in all of running. Don't believe me? Try it!