Sunday, June 19, 2016

Badger State Games Track & Field

            A group of us from Three Lakes went down to La Crosse this weekend to compete in a Track & Field meet put on by Badger State Games.  This was for all ages to compete against their own age divisions, from the 8 & under category to 80+.  This means that I got to compete!  It was almost 90 and full sun out, but it was a blast!  There were a lot of great performances from our group, and everyone earned some sweet medals.  Daisy had a PR in the high jump and made 5 feet for her first time, and Jared set a new PR for the 1500 with a 4:33.  I started with long jump and jumped 14’1” (only 3” away from my PR from about 10 years ago)! 
            The day was magical when it came to my main event: pole vault.  My goal was 11 feet (my best in college 6 years ago was 11’10”).  In warm-ups, the biggest pole we brought for me was too small, but I was able to borrow poles from UW-La Crosse, and I ended up moving through an additional 4 poles, putting me on poles I used to use in college, as well as gripping close to my old grip too.  I made 10’ and 10’6” on my first attempts, and then I missed 11’.  Fortunately, it put me as a tie for first female overall at the time, which resulted in a jump-off and giving us an additional attempt at the height.  And I made it!  Another blessing was having the UW coach there, who not only allowed me to borrow several poles, but also coached me and helped me achieve my goal!

            I later ran the 800m race as well.  There was only one heat of females, and the oldest one besides me was about half my age, so I led the whole race and ended up only 2 seconds off my PR.  This couldn’t have been a more exciting and fun experience, and I’ve really realized this past year just how much I miss the track scene and competing in pole vault.  I honestly never dreamed that I would still be able to perform at this level after 6 years and 2 kids.  The day was almost surreal.  I have heavily focused on triathlon for the past 5 years, but Track & Field (and pole vault specifically), is my true passion, and it was a day that I couldn’t have felt more alive, or more at home.

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