My husband always says that things like “those are your people” when he sees strong, female athletes who are unabashedly competitive, risk-takers, and proud (and vocal) of their accomplishments. Well, this weekend at the Masters Indoor Heptathlon Championships in Kenosha, WI, I was surrounded by “my people.”
Rebecca Connolly (W45) is “my people.” She selflessly taught me how to pole vault and then PR’ed in the event on her way to breaking her own American Age group record. She was tough, inspiring, and graceful in every event in which she competed.
Rita Hanscom (W60) is “my people.” She is perhaps the most focused female track athlete I have ever seen. She is fast. And strong. And she looks like she is 40. There are many 40 years olds I know that probably wish they could run like Rita, but most can’t.
Christel Donley (W80) is “my people.” At this meet, every spectator and competitor was awed for two days by her athletic ability, her generosity, and her ultimate breaking of the W80 WORLD Record in the Indoor Heptathlon. She is funny and sweet and I hope that I have 10% of the chutzpah that she has when I am 60. She is a complete inspiration.
And so now I will be vocal of my accomplishments as I know “my people” are doing after the meet. I PR’d in 4 of the 7 events and I broke the American Record in the W40 Indoor Pentathlon. Needless to say, I am proud of myself.