For me, there is no greater joy than playing with my children. We play football, softball, volleyball,badminton, tennis,  krav maga, ride bikes , shoot pool etc,etc,etc. We are an active and competitive bunch.

Add to that, There is a special joy associated in competing with them on a level playing field. The fairest fights are in running.

My 16 year old daughter is a good case in point. We have run several 10k’s together and although she is more a sprinter than a jogger, we compete!  Sometimes she gets the better of it, sometimes not. Our styles are vastly different. I am slow and steady. Average abt 10.5 /min mile. She can burst abt a 7 min mile but struggles stringing a few of those together. Like most kids, she shuns advice of “pace” and “rhythm”.  I try to convey my notion of “jogging meditation” and to enjoy the grind of the moment at a pace both efficient yet challenging at whatever level your at. I actually get into a zen type meditation groove as I concentrate not on the distance but on the moment. It is sooo much more enjoyable when she runs with me because i realize the impermanence of our opportunities to do this as she gets older and i treasure every second of those competitive runs. She sprints ahead to open up abt a 1/4 mile lead then she shuts down till I catch up. She might spot me a few hundred yards then sprint past like she is lo lo jones. I smile and wave as she repeats these intervals.

When she was very little we used to read about the tortoise and the hare. I use that parable  now to try and council pace and rhythm.  Slow and steady wins the race,etc. She says “tell that to the Kenyans” and repeats an observation she had as a 5 year old. “That story is ridiculous anyway, who would take a nap in the middle of a race ?!?

I may can fault her running style, but I  certainly cant fault her logic.