Thursday, December 07, 2006

Running with a Fast Crowd

I was on the local university track yesterday for my noon Wednesday workout. It was a particularly tough workout consisting of 25 x 100 meters at semi-sprint pace. Somewhere along the way I took a mental inventory of the scene around me and realized I was literally surrounded by immense talent, famous people and overachievers.

Across the track former TCU sprinter and Jamaican Olympic medalist Raymond Stewart worked with two recent track graduates from USC and the University of Washington. They are real blazers with aspirations of running on the open international circuit this season.

On my side of the track former US Olympian and Olympic medalist Jon Drummond (2) was exhibiting his famous personality by throwing teases, smiles and barbs my way. Running beside me in the workout were masters great Wayne Bennett a 100 meter masters national champion and annually ranked world class sprinter. On my other side was my friend Don Werner (2) , owner of two World Series rings from his time with the Cincinnati Reds in the “Big Red Machine” era.

Down the track at the end of the straightaway legendary TCU coach and former All-American Monte Stratton worked with his pupil/athlete, current World Class sprinter Darvis Patton (2).

My head got light from the history and talent that surrounded Seven! Later everyone was gathered in one area trading barbs and testosterone driven memories and challenges.

What a fast crowd to hang with!

If you read the links about Jon Drummond you will note that he was born with spina bifida and suffered three cases of spinal meningitis during his career. His parents were told he would never walk, yet today he owns Olympic gold medals in the sprints. Life offers us all challenges. The next time your number is dialed, think about Jon, then grab your challenge by the collar and kick its fanny. Remember, you have the the Creator's permission to win.


patti_cake said...

Wow you are RUNNING with a fast crowd but i'm confident they are running BEHIND you .. Go Seven!

~gkw said...

What a great post! Thanks so much for the uplift this morning!

Anonymous said...

Rick, thank you for your post and your reaffirmation of how benevolent, encouraging and nurturing Creator truly is - as we all know but need to be reminded of eh.


Jenn said...

Seven - you are so cool. Really.

Now...about me grabbing that challenge by the collar and kicking it's fanny.....

Seven said...

Not a chance with a couple of these kids.

You are welcome, pass it on to those athletes under your feet.

In fact I usually have to remind myself. Hope Alzheimer's stays away. Hehe

Just a slug compared to that crowd. As far as your challenge....I'll come take care of that job for you personally....maybe, make it 7X. He has earned it, has he not?

Rick said...

I can't imagine. I'm still trying to get my legs back after 30 years of abuse. It may not happen.

Anonymous said...

Wow! That is what it takes, I think, to stay challenged. If you hang around only those in your own category/class/skill level, complacency sets in. And before you jump on it, I'm not saying you are not as good as (fill in the blank), but only that by moving outside our comfort zone as we have set it, do we find inspiration. Don't ya love it, Seven, that the "kids" inspire and awe you? Whether you realize it or not, I'll bet you're an inspiration to them as well; when they see someone like yourself who maintains long after most of us (and athletes like yourself and those young'ens) have gone to seed, I think it is a powerful message of encouragement. What a cool day you had!

Seven said...

Day at a time. Muscle at at time. I promise it is there to find.

In humility I left that part out. These amazing kids have in fact said that I inspire them...?????
It makes me smile. Then it makes me wonder if they are merely indulging me. I always choose the first explanation and keep on smiling. I am a world ranked sprinter when compared to 55 year olds, owning the 4th fastest time in the world last year at 200 meters.
But...when I watch these open class athletes like Darvis move across the track faster that most humans have ever is awe inspiring... a person would have to be dead to not appreciate their remarkable devotion. I should also mention Mr. Patton is a remarkable, articulate and personable young man.
Leading the world in track sprinting is all about immensely hard work no matter your age. These are people that understand WORK, rest assured.

samuru999 said...

Love your words...
Remember you have the Creator's permission to win.
Thank you for this post!
It is very uplifting!


Seven said...

So often we divorce the idea of Creator from the reality of our moments. We all win in different ways, do we not, but HE has a persistent hope for us all. Love you being here.

Anonymous said...

Seven, what is wonderful about our world is that there are so many facets to people and how those facets refect. Admiration, indeed, goes both ways in relationships in which each understands the strength/widsom/skill, etc., of the other. Enjoy their admiration, my friend. I'm sure it was not indulgence on their part. I admire others' gifts in that way, with respect for the loving care with which they treat those abilities. Younger, older, doesn't matter.

Seven said...

That is a beautifully rendered thought. Thank you.

Enemy of the Republic said...

Stories like that always amaze me. I believe loves us all, but he blesses those with GUMPTION!

Reach said...

You knew this would get me! You are correct and this post could not have come at a better time- I thank you!

Now, on to the post-
You are the perfect example of running with the Big Dogs. Quality seeks quality, while you mention the resumes of those around you, they equally recognize the resume you have achieved. Yes, you do run with that crowd- very fast I might add...

Be safe,


Seven said...

I think so and one of the wonderful things is that we do not all want the same thing. That may sound simplistic, but inside the thought is something complex I think about the patterns of consciousness the Creator has designed. I may wish to be a World Champion in track, while someone else hopes to read every great western philosophy text. Another wants to own every pair of shoes in the Mall. There is beauty wrapped in that design I think. Hmmm....well I'm not sure about the owning all the shoes thing...but you know what I mean...;-)

Yes I am reading you and you are welcome. Honestly I was praying it wouldn't offend. But I know your spirit and I know you are 'on the case'. Gods healing my friend.

Rob said...

That's some exhalted company, should put a little extra giddy-up in your step. Have you figured your age-graded time against their's?

Seven said...

Leave it to a masters trackster to ask that question! I had not done that, but just did. If I take my best from last year it age grades to a 10.24/100m and a 20.81/200m. It would depend on what kind of day Patton, Drummond or Stewart was having in their prime. And obviously it would require my PB effort, but generally speaking their consistency would beat my best by a step or 2 or a little more.
Understand I am not training with them, I have my regular masters guys by my side, but it is a thrill to watch them fly! I also eavesdrop when any of the 3 glamour coaches are coaching and they don't seem to mind. I sat and listened to Drummond work with a student on starts one day....what an opportunity!

Rob said...

See. With those age-graded times you would be representing your country in the Olympics if you had citizenship in Nuevo Texas or Viejo Arizona or someplace like that. You know, that might be a cool thing to do. Get citizenship in Iceland and go to the summer Olympics!

Seven said...

Hehe, I live in a small incorporated city of about 3,000 completely surrounded by a much larger urban city. Maybe we can do the same thing. Nuevo US of North Texas inside the continental US. Then of course turn back the clock 30 years. Starting to get a little complicated!