After Saturday, I have a newfound respect for runners
by Franklin Clark, Reporter -- fclark@cadizrecord.com
Dec 07, 2011 | 14 14 recommendations | email to a friend | print
“I’m wasted on cross-country! We dwarves are natural sprinters! Very dangerous over short distances!”

- Gimli, son of Glóin, Lord of the Rings

This year, there was a record number of people registered for the annual Reindeer Run. 190 of them, in fact.

I was one of the 190 registered to run. In fact, it was my very first 5K (five-kilometre, or approximately 3.1-mile) run. And it was my first competitive run of any kind.

Despite no real training of any notable capacity, I managed to finish the run in roughly 30 minutes. Given that, it was a respectable time, but I vastly underestimated the training required to do this sort of thing.

In contrast, Wikipedia tells me that the fastest recorded time was achieved by Ethiopian runner Kenenisa Bekele, who did it in 12 minutes and 37 seconds in 2004. Needless to say, no one in Cadiz was that fast on Saturday.

Now, I can be somewhat quick in short spurts, but keeping up a good speed over three miles proved to be too difficult. My training consisted of getting on an elliptical machine a few times a week.

I have never been an athlete. I never really participated in sports in school. Honestly, I just wanted to try something new, something I haven’t done before, and in that respect I think I succeeded. I might even participate next year, although even as I type this, I’m still sore, if only slightly.

A lot of people who know more about running than I have said that this is the sort of thing you ease yourself into, and that you don’t want to go directly from sitting on your duff to running a race. I’m not a complete couch potato by any means, but perhaps more training next year might be in order.

Still, it was a remarkable bit of fun, even with a spot of pain afterwards.

***

There has been a lot of talk lately about volunteer firefighter shortages both here and area- and nationwide. More recently, the county has discussed hiring a recruiter/coordinator, someone who will recruit volunteer firefighters and keep them up to date on their training.

However, a few people have said we don’t need a recruiter, that what we really need is a Trigg CountyFire Chief, and possibily a county-wide fire department with compensated firefighters.

Although I have no idea how much this would cost, I realise it would be much more expensive than our current system.

I have heard little to no discussion of this, likely due to the presumed cost. I believe this is another avenue that should be investigated further, and if it is too cost-prohibitive, then so be it. But there should be some concrete figures on how much it would cost before the idea is dismissed out of hand.

A recruiter/coordinator might do wonders for our shortage problem, but if it doesn’t, paid county firefighters may be our only option.

Franklin Clark is a reporter for the Cadiz Record and can be reached by email at fclark@cadizrecord.com.
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