Us Tiger Moms Better Keep Running Shirts Tucked

In search of a vicarious endorphin high, I imposed running on my 10-year-old daughter. I registered us for the Atlanta Women’s 5K in March — then worried non-stop that I’m turning into a non-compromising, no slumber party-allowing Tiger Mom.

A little light reading. Wonder if they give AR points for Us Magazine?

Having once been a girl myself, you’d think I’d have a better grip on communicating with a budding tween. But lately all I’ve been saying is “no.” “No” to her having an iTouch, no to a cell phone, no Facebook page, no blog of her own or double-pierced ears. I did say “yes” to wearing her hair long, but I needed something to threaten cutting if she gets too big for her britches.

Dear daughter has reached the age when we need to discuss maturation. But every time I impart information – probably with the tact of porcupine at a workshop on how to make animal balloons — she looks at me and starts talking about Club Penguin. With this running togetherness, I envisioned happy mother daughter summits on boy and girl matters (and progress on that revelation above all revelations that the Birds and Bees have absolutely nothing to do with bird or bees).

First off we went shopping for athletic gear. Why run if you can’t look cute?  Trying on a white top, she glanced in the mirror and said, “Mama, I can’t wear this; it’s see-through.” I promptly found a black one and made mental note that she is never going to Daytona Beach for Spring Break.

After paying for new shoes and clothes, we embarked on our first two mile run.

“You walk too fast.”

“Hannah, this is a race we are training for.” Oh dear…Tiger mom thoughts came fast and furious and were out my mouth before I could stop. But surely those legs of hers could go faster. Let’s run to the next stop sign,” I playfully suggested. (Lots of emphasis on the playfully.)

“Mama, feel my back. Mama, please…feel my back.”

“That’s sweat Hannah.”

“I can’t go on.”

“Sweating is good for you, Hannah Kate; it’s not going to hurt you.”

Then she started sniffing her arm pits. I assured her that we could apply antiperspirant next time. Then side-stitches became an issue. I tried to be patient, but Tiger leapt overpowering my inner Tabby Cat.

One of our next outings, after applying plenty of deodorant, she pronounced mid-run that she shan’t wear her new black running shirt anymore because “black absorbs heat.” It seems becoming warm while running might be a deal breaker.

Is this a good idea? Just about every step through our runs I wonder.  But it’s a struggle to get her to practice piano or out the door to dance. It’s just a struggle to raise a tween into a teen today. Ask Billy Ray Cyrus. This isn’t so much about running together as it is about being together while running while I listen to her complain about running.

No matter how hard I try, best keep my shirt tucked in. Wouldn’t want any stripes to show.

This Wednesday my blog will feature an e-chat with Morgan County High Coach Anne Stamps. She’ll give her thoughts on the importance of inspiring girls in athletics.

Share This:

3 responses to “Us Tiger Moms Better Keep Running Shirts Tucked”

  1. Michelle T says:

    Must be scripted somewhere for 10 yr olds – I invited my nephew to Turkey Trot with me several times – and then had to drag him out of the house for a few practice sessions… “I need water (after 5 minutes)… I’m getting sunburned … Can we walk another minute?… I really need water (after 10 minutes)…” . If it was an Excuse-endurathon race instead of a 5k we would have sailed across the finish!

    But, after 5 or so short races (including a Watermelon Run where his younger cousins beat the snot out of him) he gave up asking to go to races and I gave up pushing and dragging him to the start/finish line.

    Enjoy your time with HK – she may get it now or maybe later –

    • Jamie Miles says:

      Yes, drinking water ALL the time is big. We had to leave a cup out for the dog at mile 1. You’re right Michelle. This might just have to be a once a year thing with my daughter. But now our 7yo went out last weekend with us and LOVED it. I think he’s going to be my race buddy. So know I’ll just think of this as a fun mother/daughter…excruciating trying experience.

  2. […] Musing on running after my daughter. The Atlanta Women’s 5k. I woke my daughter today at 5:30. She doesn’t wake up well at 7 on a weekday. I drug her sleeping body to the car. And while swilling coffee drove that sleeping body to in-town Atlanta for our race.  […]



Subscribe Blog Posts to Your Email.