I'm still learning the ins and outs of the sport and of coaching in general. Since I started teaching four years ago, I've wanted to ease my way into coaching athletics, but with my Language Arts background--I was quickly pigeonholed into the speech and drama department. So when the head coach approached me two years about helping him out, I didn't think twice about saying yes. I feel blessed to be able to work alongside and learn from a Christian coach who is focused on developing runners who are focused on simply doing their best to honor God with their talents and abilities. I'm grateful for the opportunity to run with kids and get to know them on a new level. I love watching kids push themselves. Back in September, one of our 7th grade runners who finished the race in the back of the pack approached me afterwards with tears in her eyes and said, "I'm so proud of myself, Mrs. Helzer--I didn't walk at all this race...I did my best!" I gave her a hug and told her I was proud of her, too--and she started crying right there on the golf course because she was so happy. It was a sweet moment that I don't think I'll ever forget...all because she pushed herself to do her best.
I don't always know what to say to kids as they're running at meets (run faster just seems too obvious); I can't diagnose the reason behind kids' aches and pains (I knew I should've taken Anatomy...), and I haven't quite figured out how to develop the "perfect" workout schedule ("go run" probably isn't specific enough). But I do know that I've enjoyed my time as an assistant and am hoping to have more years ahead of me to learn and develop as a coach.
If you're the praying type--here are a few requests as we head to the state meet:
- Pray that our kids would be focused not on winning but on simply doing their best and staying focused on what truly matters.
- We have a few kids who are hurting this week (shin splints, sore muscles, etc), so pray for relief from the pain and that they may remain injury free so they can run their best.