Out of the mouths of babes

race day confidenceAs parents, we’re expected to have most of the answers. We’re supposed to be the ones imparting wisdom on our offspring. But I can tell you, on more than one occasion, it’s been the other way around.

Saturday was one of those cases. My daughter and I ran a 5k trail race together. These are always some of my favorite moments with her…I just love to watch her run, love to chat with her out there, love to share laughs with her as we go along.

This being a trail race, she took two falls, the second being kind of hard. She was battered and bruised, but brushed off and continued on her way, me marveling at her toughness as she cried while ย she ran. When we were all finished, she’d placed first in the 12-and-unders and I couldn’t have been prouder.

Later at home, I told her she had done a great job. Her response? “Of course I did.” It made me laugh (and realize maybe we need a little lesson in humility) and I told her that I wished I had her confidence. I asked her where it came from and she told me it was easy. “Just focus on the good stuff and don’t think about the bad.”

Huh. Simple, isn’t it? Kids have the gift of not over thinking things. Would that I could approach self-confidence the way she does. But next time I toe the line, I am going to try hard to listen to her advice and focus on the good, not the bad. I think it can go a long way.

How’s your race-day confidence? Ever have a child teach you the lesson?


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  1. says

    That is so sweet! Congrats to her for winning AND for being able to pick herself up after a rough fall. I need to seriously start focusing on my race day mental toughness. As soon as I think I might not do as good as I had hoped, I tell myself that is OK and then it becomes OK. I need to not let myself get away with that attitude, sometimes.
    Amy @ Writing While Running recently posted..NJ Marathon: Spectator’s Re-CapMy Profile

  2. says

    What a sweet little girl you have. She is so right too. I find that I lack confidence before the race begins but then I find my confidence while running. I think I always become a better version of myself while running.

  3. says

    That’s awesome :) My son was walking around telling everyone he was “awesome” this weekend – every. single. person who asked what kind of runner he was. I should take a slight note (don’t want to go overboard and be delirious…)
    Sheila recently posted..PCRF 5K Race Review & RecapMy Profile

  4. says

    Oh I love these words of wisdom. So true. I tried to keep similar words in my head yesterday – focus on the good. Those kids really are full of amazing insights. Congrats to your daughter on a great race!!
    Christine @ Love, Life, Surf recently posted..Run MommyMy Profile

  5. says

    This response is on another topic you wrote about. Throw away clothes. I have a bag but seem to keep coming home with the things I am going to leave on the side of a race. Yesterday I over dressed and had on a top I didn’t need. At first I tied it around my waist but quickly hated that and actually left it for someone to find I hope. It is amazing how hard it is to get rid of something we have already decided we don’t want any more! But I did it this time.
    Andrea recently posted..Racing is Fun AgainMy Profile

  6. says

    I think your daughter knew I needed to read this post this morning. Focus on the good; don’t think about the bad. So applicable to my DNF from yesterday. LOTS of good things before I had to stop. Thank you for this.
    And a huge congrats to your sweet superstar daughter – clearly, the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree =)
    Michele @ NYC Running Mama recently posted..Initial Thoughts on NJ Marathon (Failure)My Profile

  7. says

    I LOVE it!! Yes kids have the best perspective! I tend to psych myself out at the starting line. This past weekend I ran a race pushing my girls…Em called out as we started off, “Mom I just know we are going to win this one!!” I told her we won the stroller division!
    Fancy Nancy recently posted..Monday MotivationMy Profile

  8. says

    My race day confidence is a roller coaster… really low in the morning when I get up and get moving around…but when I get to the start line…the adrenaline get’s me going… I love the emotions of the start line. I wish I could channel that the entire time.

    Congrats to your little one, she did awesome and I love her perspective!
    Laura recently posted..Good, Bad & Yummy 5/3-5/5My Profile

  9. says

    So cute, and so honest. Congratulations to your daughter, and kudos to you for being an inspiring mom!
    I can’t believe she continued running although she was crying; she’s a tough cookie!
    I hit the trails this weekend in the mountains and fell really hard, somersaulting on the way down. Thankfully I wasn’t hurt. You have to be careful on those trails!!

  10. says

    Awe, so sweet. I love that! My kids have taught me so many things, some good, some not so much. Like I could have made it my whole life not knowing that G.I. Joe’s will break a salad spinner and that Elmo does not fit down the toilet ๐Ÿ˜‰
    My confidence on race day and during races is horrid. I doubt everything and never trust my abilities. I need a little bit of your daughters confidence.
    Missy recently posted..Esprit de SheMy Profile

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