Opinion: Just keep going

Ryan Sampson

Ryan Sampson

Ryan Sampson is a senior architecture major and columnist for the Daily Kent Stater. Contact her at [email protected].

I’m not much of a runner, but my mom is. If I have any ounce of athletic talent, it comes from her. In fact, she still holds records in cross country at her high school, continues to run at the Air Force Academy and can even outrun me today.

Still, in my defense, I try. I didn’t run much in high school, but I wanted to stay in shape when I came to school, and since I couldn’t find the time to swim, I started to run. I met my Kent State running buddy the second week of my freshman year. She is petite and blonde, with big blue eyes; her name is Megan, but she quickly became Meg.

Meg and I are very different: she is organized, smiley and carefree, which is a stark contrast to a tall, sporadic brunette with a dramatic personality. She, like my mother, is a runner; I more or less toddle along.

Despite our differences in speed and ability, whenever we get the chance, Meg and I have gone running in the indoor track above the basketball courts, as we both have a strong distaste for treadmills. There are six laps to a mile on the outside lane and as we run, I count the laps out loud. One, two, three, four, five, six, then start again at one.

This method of keeping track of the distance is a change in our routine; I used to count each lap, letting the numbers accumulate until the run was finished. An alteration like this may seem insignificant to you, but there’s a world of meaning behind it: it’s a fresh start, a new chance, and a reminder to keep going. It doesn’t matter how the previous mile went, and each new number is a clear indication of how close we are to the finish line, and how far we have to go. Right now, I need that clarity.

I wish I could find the same lucidity in regards to my schoolwork that I feel on that track. I am graduating soon — too soon. Things are hard, I don’t sleep enough and I feel incredibly far behind, but I know that no matter what, I have to keep going. Midterms are coming up; across campus, the lights are staying on later, and students are becoming panicked. There aren’t enough hours in the day to study for the tests, write the papers and finish the projects.

Calm down, breathe deep, and just keep going. Do whatever you can each day, and start fresh the next day. Don’t dwell on the mistakes you made the day before, but on what you can accomplish today. There are 24 hours in a day; plan accordingly, do what you can and, above all else, keep going.