To anyone who feels like they are too _________________…

All smiles before the race!

Even though it’d been a busy, stressful and low sleep week, and even though I’m more than a little behind on my training due to a strained peroneal tendon, I was hopeful that I’d have a good day with dear friends at the Leadville Heavy Half a couple of weeks ago.

Weirdly, though, someone hitched a caboose to my ass and I found myself slipping way behind Joey and Sara.  Only a mile and a half into the race I knew it was going to be a slog.

And it was.

At about mile 4-ish of the course begins a long, arduous climb up Mosquito Pass, which tops out over 13,000′.  The first section is pretty gradual, then the middle section gets steep, and the final switchbacks are just eternal.  There’s no oxygen up there and movement was tough.

After the first section, the wind picked up and it became really quite cold.  I stopped at the aid station, donned my jacket, choked down some sort of nutrition and continued slowly plodding my way up the hill.

Just out of the aid station, a kid, couldn’t have been more than 10 or so, passed me with his dad, easy breezy.  And as I went I began to realize that literally every possibly type of person was going by me… either passing me from behind, or meeting me on their way back down towards the start.

And I thought again of what Melanie has said… that at a race you watch every possible excuse run by…

Too big.

Too little.

Too young.

Too old.

Too fat.

Too skinny.

Too light.

Too dark.

Too busy.

Too stressed.

Too worried.

Too hurting.

Too grieving.

Too sad.

Too depressed.

Too handicapped.

Too scared.

Every single excuse you could conjure went by me that day.  It’s incredible to behold.

And so I say to you, you’re not TOO anything.  You can do it.  Whatever it might be.

Get up. Get out. Get going.

Inspire us.