Cindy Gonzalez was a participant in the first Cowtown in 1979.
Gonzalez and her Southwest High School cheerleading mates passed out water and cheered on the 213 who dared take on not only the 26.2 miles but also the 24-degree morning made worse by icy conditions.
Now 55, Gonzalez, a former swimmer at TCU from 1981-85, will be the one needing the water.
Gonzalez will be back for the 40th Cowtown, but this time she’ll be running. She will attempt the Cowtown Double, running the 5K Saturday and the half-marathon Sunday.
The Cowtown is set for Feb. 24-25, with a start and finish at the Will Rogers Memorial Center. The 5K and 10K races will be on the 24th. The half, marathon and 31-mile ultra-marathon will be run on 25th.
“I’ve done a number of 5Ks,” Gonzalez said. “Friends were doing them, and I thought, ‘You, know, I need to do one of those.’ I did the 5K last year.
“That same day we got the phone call about my brother-in-law.”
Bobby Gonzalez had suffered a debilitating stroke, though, thankfully, he is making a full recovery.
“Now, he gets up every morning and walks,” Gonzalez said. “That was the motivation to do the half. If he can do that I can do this.”
Gonzalez uses Jeff Galloway’s run-walk method and has been a devoted disciple of the Cowtown training schedule.
She doing something just about every day. She said she generally runs Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday, depending on the weather. Sunday, Monday and Wednesday are generally reserved for indoor cycling.
Gonzalez has also studied up on what elite runners do to prepare.
She has no target time in mind for Feb. 24, other than an 11ish-minute mile. The goal is to finish and enjoy it.
She doesn’t have plans to one day step up to the Greek standard, but who knows.
A marathon is “never out of the question. One step at a time. You should never sell yourself short.”