Thursday, April 17, 2008

Running . . . . . . A Fever

A couple of days ago, I signed up for my first race since the February marathon, a simple, local 5k race benefiting a good cause. I imagined this would be very special race, not only because its route is essentially one I run routinely (so I know where all the potholes are), but also because I signed my 5 year old daughter and 7 year old son up for the race as well! But before you turn me in to child protective services, let me assure you that I'm not going to make them run the 3.10685596118667 mile course, I'll let them walk or crawl . . . just kidding. They are entered into a 1/2K run/walk/crawl. This translates into a mere 0.3106855961 miles, but because of their lack of commitment to the rigorous, unrelenting training I've been subjecting them to, which includes walking around the block eating a bag of chips, and bringing me drinks from the refrigerator, I suspect the final 0.0000000061 will be difficult for them.

That is . . . . if the race at all.

As luck would have it, we found out just yesterday that my daughter has strep throat, which means all the 4-year old boys who've been chasing her will get what's coming to them. She had been exhibiting frequent, excessive urination patterns the last few days, but I dismissed it as a result of her "carb loading" via the liters of Gatorade I've been forcing her to drink. It turns out that her symptom is the latest, trendiest manifestation of the streptococcus bacteria. Now with her sore throat and course of antibiotics she's taking, I'm doubtful if she'll be willing to race in less than two days, and if she courageously wills herself to go, she won't be in top form (but I bet she still beats her brother.) I just wonder if they will have port-o-potties set up along the 0.3+ mile course. Can you imagine a 5 year-old girl running 20 steps with a noticeable urge to go, taking a bathroom break, running another 20 steps wincing, taking another bathroom break, then taking the final 20 steps to the finish line where I greet her with a solar blanket, a carb bar, and a bed pan?

As if my daughter's misfortune was not enough, I just found out hours ago that my son has too fallen ill. In fact, he was sent home from school today, something about vomit, fever, whining, and slipping. Great! If my kids didn't want to run the race, I wish they would have just told me before I dropped $10 a piece for their entry fees. I guess like any avid racer, to them, it was all about the free $10 T-shirt they get for entering the race. Little do they know that it's the FINISHER'S shirt that's the most important. Little do I know that there ARE no finisher's shirts for a 5k or 1/2K, so maybe they DO know that. . . I've got some clever kids!

Anyway, I'm still hoping for great weather and for my children to make a full recovery by Saturday morning, and that at the end of the 1/2K, which I will run along with them, barking "faster, push it, faster, there's a tiger behind you!" we'll all cross the finish line, smiling through our grimaces together, and that my wife will be their with a camera to capture the priceless family moment.

1 comment:

kwkorpi said...

This just in . . .
I just heard a 2nd-hand story of high school boy long ago who had strep and whose coach made him run like a "real man." Later in life, at age 25, after 2 heart valve replacement surgeries, he died. Doctors attributed his weak heart to the strain he put on it while infected with strep.

My daughter will NOT be in the race. The T-shirt is *already* hers.