My kids and I train at the same martial arts academy. I'm a Brown belt, Allegra is a Brown belt, Gabe is a Red One and Emma is Red. Allegra and I have about 8 months to black belt and Gabe and Emma have about a year.
When you are ready to test for your black belt, there are a lot of steps involved. A certain level of push ups, sit ups, pull ups (or flex hang for the girls), and a timed run.
I know already that the run will be the arch nemesis of all four of us.
Did I fail to mention that the 2 mile run needs to be completed in about 17 minutes to make black belt? So, yeah, there's that.
We started off the run and I was quickly at the very back of the pack. Yeah, I'm slow. Whatever. I don't have to test for 8 months, and I'm starting early so that I can take my time trying to get to the correct level. Emma was zipping ahead, keeping up with the boys (yeah, it's all boys) for quite a while, even though her running form is terrible. She flaps her hands, she zigs and zags - but she's running and she loves it.
About 1/4 mile in, she stopped and walked. I quickly caught up to her and then started walking. I don't mind, I want her to take it slow and not get discouraged. After walking for about 30 seconds, I encouraged her to run again. The instructor looped back to show me where the 1/2 mile marker was, and I told Emma that for this, the first day, we'd only run one mile. We turned around and ran back, alternating intervals so that she could catch her breath.She asked several times if she could walk. I know that in school, the second grade runs 1/2 mile so this full mile was the farthest she's ever run, and I could tell it waas tough for her.
When we returned to the academy, she grinned ear to ear. "I'm not even tired! And I'm not sweating! This was easy, I think I'm gonna do 2 miles next time!" I was glad to hear it, and left her with her friends and went back out to run the second mile. When I came back, she came up to me with a simple request.
"Uh, Mom? You run too slow. You run like an old lady. I'd like to be able to run faster - I know I can keep up with the boys and do the whole 2 miles. I think you are holding me back."
This child will be THE DEATH OF ME.