What I Learned from My 6-year-old

You see this little skinny kiddo:

Yes, she's trying to take after Katye with the crazy ponytail.  She's, by far, the most petite of my kids.  But this little one has something that many of us struggle with - courage!  And besides her arms being pulled back as she runs, and her lovely forefoot strike... this girl has a key ingredient - positive self-talk.
I don't run out my front door often.  I usually travel to run.  My neighborhood is quite small (and hilly), and besides I'm usually travelling to meet buddies or stuck on a treadmill.  But today I woke up and noticed the hubs was heading into work a little later than usual, so I threw on some running clothes and headed out the door.  The second Lily heard the door creak, she came sprinting out of her room, "Can I come, can I come???"  How can I turn that down?  She threw on a skirt and tank and headed out the door with me. 
She started fast out of the gate.  She normally runs around a 12:30 min/mile.  I was worried she would fizzle especially because the mile loop I usually take with her is downhill the first half and uphill the second half.  She was just over 11:00 min/mile that first half, and then we hit the hill.  I was sure she'd slow down.  Then it started...  Lily started talking to herself...
"Come on, Lily."
"There's a flat part halfway up the hill, just get there."
"OK, Lily, it's flat here, let's push."
"I can see the house from here, just a little longer."
"Last hill Lily, attack it."  (And yes, the little piece of work sped up.)
At this point, I could hear that her breathing was labored and that she was really tired, but that little stubborn thing Would. Not. Stop.  She continued...
"Alright Lily, last street."
"Come on, push it through Lily."
"Last bit Lily, finish strong." 
And she did... in 10:59 min/mile.  I was pretty proud of those short skinny legs.  But mostly of her guts.  I mean clearly there are lots of faster 6-year-olds, but this girl has courage and determination.  Now if only we could all take a lesson from her and carry that kind of positive talk through 26.2 rounds!