The hurdle toddlers race
Rumors of thunder storms and dry lightening accompanied the high temperatures and high humidity. The night air, though still warm, has cooled slightly. The moon's shine wears the veil of clouds and bathes the land in a sleepy pale haze of white. Earlier today, at around 6:30 PM, Devin and I ran a couple intervals around Nordoff High School's track.
The plan was 2 or 3 timed 800s. Devin wanted us to shoot for a 70 second 400 split. We warm up by jogging around the track twice, then stretching for 10 minutes and then jogging around the track again at a faster pace. As we begin, I cannot help noticing all the children around. Several people walk slowly around the inside lane. It is nice that the families are getting out and exercising but it'd be nice if they had the awareness to keep the inner lanes open for the faster runners. Anyway, we run the first 800 at a decent clip but were both unable to run the sub 2:25 that had been our goal. Dev ran a 1:29 and I ran a 1:33. The next 800 I sat out and timed Devin. He struggled on the 2nd lap, looking like he was running in molasses down the back stretch. He ended up running a 1:30.
I then walked/jogged a lap with Dev as he cooled down. Scout, his dog following along. Scout seems to really enjoy the track he's good at sprints but is unable to keep up beyond 200m. We arrive at the starting line with dev unsure if he is going to run another 800. On your mark... get set... go. We are off and I lead this one. The first 400 split is around 73 sec, I try to pick up the pace, I hear Dev's breath fade away as he drops out. 400 was enough for him. Down the home stretch, I pick up the pace and finish strong at a decent clip. I feel like I still had something left, time: 1:31.
Devin convices me to run another timed lap. He wants us to see if we can both run a sub 70 quarter mile. We go out strong. He inches away from me down the back stretch. Around the last turn, my legs and lungs are both: "Sorry dude, we're pooped" and Devin pulls farther away down the home stretch. He runs an amazing 65 second quuarter. I run a 71 second quater.
To the credit of all the parents and children clogging the track, they moved quickly out of the way when they realized that they were blocking the lanes. There is a danger factor here and I hope that awareness will grow that tracks are for jogging and running. Thus unattended 2-5 year olds need more supervision when there are people running and jogging.
I have a feeling that I may be coming off as arrogant or hard headed. That is fine with me. I am just trying to prevent an accident by raising awareness that running tracks are meant for running. Ojai has a whole bunch of playgrounds. On the other hand we could have another addition to the world of track and field. Let's see, we have the hurdles, we have the steeple chase. There's always room for another event along this vein. We could have the hurdle toddlers race.