Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Modern Day Glady-ator


The only racewalking I do is between here and the bathroom.

Okay, now I'm really in trouble and it's all the fault of a sweet liddle ol' lady clear over in Hawaii. Maybe you've heard about her. Gladys Burrill, also known as the Glady-ator, just turned 90 this past Sunday. So I'm clapping and cheering and thinking how grand that was and then, oh Lordy, she laid the smack on me.

She isn't satisfied with reaching such a great age with her health intact and her brain still nimble. No. She has to make the rest of us -- at any age -- look like a bunch of namby-pamby wimps, that's what. This woman is about to enter her FIFTH racewalking marathon in as many years!

Channel 9 KGMB has the video interview with transcript here. Go ahead. Check it out. I'll still be here when you come back. I'll have some coffee ready for you. It helps with shock, you know. Yes, I'll even add a splash of golden nectar if you want.

You're back. Good. Isn't she something else? Wow. Okay, I see you've stopped shaking so I guess you're ready for this next bit. See, I know zilch about marathons so I clicked over to the web site for the Honolulu Marathon just to see if I could figure out exactly what our Gladys would be doing. I mean, she's saying she'll break the record for her age group if she finishes in 8 1/2 hours. And I'm thinking, whoa! Walking for 8 1/2 hours? Paint me yellow and call me a cab!

If I understand this correctly, the walking marathon, as opposed to the running marathon, is a distance of 10K -- about 6.2 miles. Doesn't sound so bad, right off the top, eh? I remember way back in the day, I could do the 1 mile between my house and the supermarket in 15 minutes without fainting. Heh. According to some quick Googling, average speed might be more like 20 to 30 minutes per mile. I really don't think Gladys will be going for that particular speed, however. If she's aiming at 8 1/2 hours, she's going to be pacing herself at more like an hour per mile, with rest stops. Lots of rest stops.

Well, gee. I think she's absolutely fantastic and come December 14th I'll be cheering her on, for sure. She is just utterly inspiring. And I'll tell you this -- it is only my extreme admiration for her that keeps me from smacking her silly.

Why? Well, just think about it. Any time we find ourselves with a perfectly legitimate need to do a little therapeutic whining, there will be the Glady-ator, smiling and NOT whining and making the rest of us feel guilty for wimping out. Good grief, I'll probably have to eat twice as much chocolate to overcome the angst. Now, if you'll excuse me, I have to racewalk to the bathroom again. All that coffee, you know.


10 comments:

John Bailey said...

Admiration, or smacking... hmmm... some choices are difficult! More power to the lady; I'll join you with the chocolate, Dee. :-)

Dee said...

Heh, heh. Somehow, John, I knew I'd have company with the choccy. Pull up a chair, old son, and we'll have at it.

kate et jim said...

Mind if I pull up a chair and share the chocolate??? lol.

bonnie said...

Well my sugar is to high so I'll have to join you in the coffee and we will cheer this lady on! She has to be an exception.

Becky said...

Good thing I have plenty of chocolate here, Dee...I'm way too tired from reading about Gladys to make it to your place.

Helen Ashley said...

Glady is an amazing lady!! She is a positive thinker, strong physically and mentally as well as admired by many. I have first hand knowledge as I am her 68 year old daughter!

Yes, I will be in the marathon (10K) this year for the first time! Plan to meet her at the finish line.

Dee said...

Woohah! Helen, thank you for stopping by for a comment. And now we have two people to cheer on during the marathon! What fun. Wish you would leave us an e-mail addy so we could send you congratulations when you both finish -- as I don't doubt for a moment that you will.

Maggie said...

Isn't she amazing. Helen too.

Anonymous said...

Gladys is definitely an inspiration.
mz. em

The Old Guy said...

Jo and I have loved the accounts of Ralph's adventures, along with the memorable portraits that captured his essential nature. He was lucky to land in the lap of the lady who loved him with so much acceptance and kindness.