Well, hot off the heels of his 50th parkrun, Sam has floored me yet again.
I was asked after school one day a few weeks ago if I'd run with Sam in a years 3 and 4 cross country competition if they signed him up. 'Well, um...yes', I said. I'm always happy to run with either of the boys although I was a bit confused at first seeing as it was for a competition and not a fun run and Sam is not exactly what you'd call speedy! I was assured that it wouldn't matter, and that they wanted to include him.
Well, the day came yesterday. I picked the boys up from school and got Sam changed there before we left. A big smile came over his face when I showed him his trainers and running bottoms! He put on the school's top and then we drove out to Sandy Gap to mooch about until the races started.
We met some of our WWC friends there who were going to help me with William whilst I was running and cheer us on as well as the other Cubs who were taking part for their schools. There were 4 races in total, year 4 boys, year 4 girls, year 3 boys and year 3 girls. So Sam was in the third race. We watched as the first two groups sprinted off at great speed toward the Roundhouse and then back again. The older boys and girls had to run two laps, whereas the younger ones would be running one lap. Sam was getting more and more excited and I was feeling a tad nervous having seen the speed of the other children.
Before I knew it, it was our turn and we got into position. After a short set of instructions the whistle blew and we set off. As I suspected, the other boys flew away from us, but Sam was also running! Needed a little prompting at the start but then he was off. Although we'd been at the back to start with we managed to overtake 2 boys just before the Roundhouse and we caught up with a few more on the bend back to the finish. Although he took my hand a couple of times, Sam used it more to push away from me and he just kept going! He did a fantastic steady pace most of the way round and I think he enjoyed seeing his friends cheering him on. Couldn't have been prouder.
He finished third from last but had an absolute ball the whole way round. I wish our group had needed to complete a second lap to be honest just to see him enjoy the event for longer. Because of the pace he'd been doing, he could have physically kept going too. It was so nice to have him involved in an event like this and I'm very thankful he was given the opportunity. Yes, it was a competition but it didn't feel competitive and is just one more example of how inclusive running can be!