By: Staff Reports | Gwinnett Citizen
From left, father Allen, Serenity and Mom, Chimain Douglas, Grayson, GA

Running life's race
By Marcus Lindsey

The best 400-meter time in the National Junior Olympics belongs to 16-year-old Archer High student Serenity Douglas… a stark 53.99 seconds. But, according to Serenity, the race belongs to God.

Her running career starting at age 8, Mom and Dad, Chimain and Allen, have made sacrifices to support this budding superstar’s athletic career. The youngest of two, Serenity first showed her speedy potential at age 8 when her mother’s sister, Tracy Sands, told Chimain and Allen they should consider seriously supporting Serenity’s talent on the track. That talent was first nurtured in a church track club, then blossomed with the help of many professional and personal coaches, recently culminating in her personal best in the National Junior Olympics in Humble, Texas, July 21-27.

Competing with the best in state, sectionals and regionals (all states bordering Georgia), then nationals, Serenity qualified in the New Balance Inter-nationals Elite with a time of 54.61 seconds.

Any big secret here? Not so much… a lot of hard work; four to five days a week, two to three hours a day; the support of numerous coaches, friends, family members and… well, her God, of course.

“I pray every day thanking God for this gift, asking Him to use it to His glory,” Serenity said. After that, Serenity just tries to relax and let loose.

What’s next? Of course, state competition for Archer High, and eventually, World Youth Olympics 2015 in Columbia, South America. After that, Serenity’s sights are set on the 2016 Olympics in Rio Di Janeiro.

Proud Momma and Daddy admit gladly the sacrifices, both in time and finances, have been “An investment in Serenity’s dream.” And a beautiful dream it has become, with chances good it will be all the sweeter with time. A very, very fast time… probably better than 53 seconds in the 400 meter. All who know Serenity think so, anyway.