Tag Archives: track

The 800-Meter Life Metaphor

The opening lap of the freshmen boys’ 800 meters last night: The #2 son is second to last.

Life is like an 800-meter race.

#2 and his teammate Eric still are behind the six other competitors during the first lap.

You can start off slowly but surely, with your legs hurting, feeling like a slug. Suddenly you find yourself falling behind the rabbits who were fast off the start. Your confidence might start to waver as you encounter opponents who seem better than you.

#2 catches up to the pack coming off the final curve of the race.

But then you get a burst of energy, and you remember that just two days ago you came from behind to achieve your goal. Can you do it again?

The three runners ahead of #2 will be behind him at the finish!

So you lift up the pace and start picking off those who are throwing roadblocks to your success in front of you. One by one by one.

Run, #2 son, run!

Until you reach the finish line and see that those who had started so much faster now are looking at your back! You weren’t the best today, but you gave it your all and didn’t give up. In the 2 minutes and 19 seconds that it took you to move from seventh (out of eighth) place to third, you learned a lot about life at 14 years old—that some may be faster and some may really test you, but if you try your best, success often will be waiting at the finish.

And remember that “success” doesn’t have to be a number or a place. It’s also that great feeling after a Herculean effort and ending up with a smile on your face.

Congratulations to my #2 son for finishing his first high school track season by running his best 800 meters at the district meet last night. Love that killer kick! Love the faith that you had in yourself that you would succeed. You are—and always will be—a winner!

Got Air?

Cody (left) sails through the air during the 3200 meters.

Need air? It’s everywhere at your local high school track meet.

Jordan speeds along during the 3200.

Running? Yep, there’s air. Photographers love to capture runners when both feet are off the track.

Reid goes airborne in the 1600 meters.

Makes it look like they’re floating on air!

While Tim runs in the air, one of his competitors comes down to earth during the 100 meters.

Air is apparent whether it’s a longer event, like the 1600 and 3200 meters, or the 100-meter dash.

Josh and his competitors fly through the 100 meters.

It does seem like the sprinters are up in the air more than they are on the track!

Derrick glides along during the first leg of the 4 x 100-meter relay.

There’s no shortage of air during the relays. Either while running . . .

Owen soars as he prepares to hand off to an airborne Justin in the 4 x 200-meter relay.

. . . or about to hand off. If only style points could be awarded!

Kenton flies over land and sand!

Some of our competitors fly above a couple of surfaces. Kenton’s personal air show was in the 4 x 400-meter relay and the long jump.

Kmal sends the shot flying.

Sometimes an athlete stays on the ground only to hurtle an object into space. Like the shot put. Lots of air there!

Of course, for me as a mom photographer, the best feat of the feet . . .

The #2 son airs it out during the 800 meters.

. . . are centered around the 10 toes of my #2 son. Especially when they’re flying through the air with the greatest of ease!

Jumping Jehosaphat!

Up and over the bar in the pole vault!

Last week’s high school junior varsity track meet also featured our girls’ team. For them, the freshmen don’t have their own division, like the boys do, because there just aren’t enough girls. But that doesn’t mean that they’re not in it to win it!

Jasmine leaps in the triple jump.

I concentrated on shooting some of the field events, because I knew a couple of the girls who were competing.

Cori takes off and glides through the air during the triple jump.

You might remember Cori and Tori (ironic rhyming!) from this blog post about their JV basketball travails.

She extends and is about to stick the landing!

They both compete in the triple jump, and it was fun trying to capture them photographically as they flew through the air.

Tori begins her trip over the high jump bar.

Tori also high jumps. Knowing she had at least three attempts, I tried different angles in documenting her efforts.

Tori springs up.

This angle made for a messier background (I’m glad the Nikon 70-200mm lens wide open at f/2.8 provides such wonderful bokeh!). But it was best for seeing her face, as she strained to jump over the bar.

Up and over . . . while the bar stays put!

Tori might like this angle best . . . because it shows her winning jump!

Leaping lizards . . . and Bulldogs!

Let There Be Light—At a Track Meet

The competition, including the #2 son in the middle, stays close during the first lap of the 800 meters.

Remember last Friday’s post in which a British reviewer of the movie “Percy Jackson & the Lightning Thief” claimed I was dim-witted?

Sidebar: I’ll wait while you re-read/read it; check out the 12th and 13th paragraphs. Ready to continue?

Apparently, Christopher Tookey was right . . . when it comes to photographing track meets.

Abhi shows his emotion as he runs to a win in the junior-varsity 800 meters.

After spending two years documenting the highs and lows of my #2 son during middle school track meets, you’d think I’d remember one basic principle of late winter/early spring in the Houston area: When the sun sets, it gets very cold. Multiple-jacket cold. Wish-you-had-a-blanket-and-the-Mister-to-cuddle-with cold.

Justin battles in the inside lane during the jv 100-meter dash.

I always take the lesson to heart . . . by the second meet. And I always forget it for the first one, leaving bruises on my freezing behind from kicking myself for only wearing one lightweight jacket. And a short-sleeve t-shirt. When will I learn?

As you can gather from the photos, high school track season has started for #2. He’s running in the freshmen division during junior varsity meets. In middle school he was a sprinter. Now he’s moved up to the 800 meters.

The light shines on the #2 son during the 800 meters.

#2 had a great debut at a distance he’d never competed at, finishing second in 2:23 (the winner, who is to his left, blew away the field in 2:09) at last week’s Bulldog Relays. Of course, I snapped a bunch of pix. When I was looking at the above photo on my iMac, I was struck by how the sun’s light seems to be striking only my boy. What a lucky photo break!

Reid is poised for his second-place finish in the freshmen 3200 meters.

But then I saw it again when I looked at photos of Reid . . .

Cody stays close to his running rival in the freshmen 3200 meters.

. . . and Cody in the 3200 meters. Perhaps something was, dare I say it, afoot?!?

Josh takes an early lead in the jv 3200.

Maybe it was just this part of the track that favored our athletes’ illumination.

Nick shines brightly during the jv 3200.

It seemed uncanny how the light shone only on our runners!

Owen stretches to hand off to Christian in the jv 4 x 100-meter relay.

The light seemed to follow our runners down the track.

Christian runs the curve during the 4 x 100-meter relay.

Great light for those who are light on their feet! Photography is all about light, and I loved what I had to work with.

Until the sun set. And it got dark. And cold. Very cold. Soon I had to increase my shutter speed to compensate for shiver-induced blur. That meant it was time to put my Nikon D700 and Nikon 70-200mm lens away and try to gather warmth from the small but hardy band of freshmen parents sitting in the stands. Yes, on aluminum bleachers. Frosty aluminum bleachers.

The team’s next meet is Thursday, when the expected high is 60 with a low in the mid-40s. I will be better prepared! I’m off to look for my long underwear!