Growing up in a running family, it never occurred to me that it wasn't normal to get up before the sun and go to races. I spent my infants being carried around the start/finish area by one person or another, my toddler years running Kids' run, my 6-7 years helping run spindles from the chute to the timers (shout to everyone who remembers spindles- let me know if you do in the comments), and ran my first of many 5ks when I turned 8.
Mind you, I never fell in love with running the way the rest of my family did, but I plugged along with my on-again, off-again running philosophy, and enjoyed watching the sport grow and change. But I never really though of myself as a "Runner", and certainly not an inspiration.
But this year, after I ran my first 10k, I got a call from my Aunt M, congratulating me. "Emma," she said, "If you can run a 5k, I can start building back up to a 5k" (she's run 1/2 marathons before, but not in a while).
Well, the running bug spread, and before long, we had a mini-family reunion being planned for the Lady Track Shack 5k, with my Aunt M., and cousins N, A, and M. They came, they ran (and walked), and conquered. But they weren't the only ones in my family running.
Both my Grandmas (Mom's side and Dad's side), inspired by their respective children, have been running and walking for years. And now, in their 80's, they are still participating in 5ks, and placing in their age group ('course, they're usually the only ones in their age group :) ).
That being said, its amazing to me how contagious the running bug is. So next time you run, remember, you might be inspiring someone else. And who knows? Maybe they'll be running in their 80s too.