a real treat

yesterday morning my family and i hit the trails for some exercise – all of us.  abby (5), will (almost 4) and i all laced up our running shoes and my husband robert hopped on his bike with the trailer hitched up for when the kids got tired.

the kids were SO excited to be going on a run with me and could not believe that i was letting them accompany me on the trails without “Big Orange” (as we so fondly call our awesome double BOB running stroller).  we walked to the trailhead and then they stretched a little before we started on our way.  abby was hilarious – she explained very insistently before we left the house that she would NEED me to bring her “some of those running treatments, those candies that give me energy” so i threw a pack of sport beans in the bike trailer and told them they could each have one at the halfway point.

they hit the pavement with exhilarating speed – it was so cute to watch as they ran in front of me at what i knew was the fastest they could go.  then…they stopped.  “i’m soooo tired!” they would both say.  so i talked to them about how this run was not a race and they slowed down a bit to stay nearer to me.  i had to explain over and over (and over and over…) again that they needed to stay to the right because the trail was busy.  they tried hard to obey the rules.  every time we passed a runner or biker they were so happy to say good morning and to brag that they were on a run with their mommy.  it made my heart swell with joy – here i am 24 weeks pregnant (and REALLY showing it!), running with my two enthusiastic and grateful children.  my husband biking at the pace of a snail to be there in support.  it was a good morning!!

when we made it to the half mile marker they were excited and of course each got a sport bean (yay!) and drank some water.  we pushed on to the complete a mile, still going in the same direction.  they both really wanted to quit before we hit the mile marker but i was able to convince them to keep going.  once we made it a whole mile they were SO happy!  it was adorable!  i wasn’t timing us, but i am pretty sure that with all the stops and starts and walk breaks it took us 20 minutes.  it was fun though!

they hopped in the bike trailer with robert at that point and i ran alone for a little while.  robert came biking back in my direction after i had gone about a mile though – both kids were crying and complaining that they wanted to be with me.  i was trying to make it to three miles out (so i would do a total of 6) and deliver water to my running buddies who were on a 20 miler along the trail, but they passed me before that point so robert was going to bike ahead with the water for them instead.  the kids wanted to stick with me, which meant we were turning around and the kids and i would do 2 miles to get  home.  we mostly walked those 2 miles, and they complained nearly the whole way.  their legs were tired.  they just wanted to be home.  why was home SO far away??  it was amazing to me…this was really far for them to go on those little legs and they were dealing with their inner demons telling them it was time to GIVE UP.  but there was no choice.  to get home, we had to use our legs and try our best to be positive and not think about how bad we might be feeling.  so we made up a story and started with chapter one…after a few minutes imaginations were running wild and we have a tale filled with characters (a pink bunny named cherry who drove an ice cream truck, a red dragon named thunder and a Bakugan named “Bak”) who were on an adventure trying to get to the very top of a giant ice cream cone.  it was fun and all three of us forgot about our complaints and before we knew it, we were home.

of course, when we got home they both thought it very important to celebrate with an after run treat.  so at 10:00 in the morning they each had a sugar cone filled with chocolate ice cream with chocolate chips on top.  i skipped on the morning dessert, but my post-run treat was the pure joy and happiness in my heart and in the hearts of my children.

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