“Why do I run?
I was never a runner but I have always loved two things; helping others overcome their challenges and taking on challenges for personal growth. A few years ago, my brother challenged me to do something that seemed so outlandish that it put into perspective the phrase, “What doesn’t kill you, makes you stronger.”
He had been running the Tough Mudder Challenge for a few years and for some reason thought it might be something I would want to do. I learned that it supports wounded veterans and that was important to me. Well, the challenge was offered and in a moment of “what was I thinking?!” I caved and accepted. What now? I began running – er – I mean “wogging”, as many times a week as possible (which wasn’t much with a preschooler in the house). I added strength training on a budget which consisted of carrying a milk jug filled with water around the block with me when I ran, lifting household items and doing body weight exercises.
It was hard! I was determined! Not being one to back down from a challenge, especially one from my brother, I kept going. I started running on my lunch breaks at work. Started including the stairs that go up to my office door. All the while, I had one goal; to survive the Tough Mudder. In November 2013, I completed the challenge by running the Mudder without a team. I realized that if I can do that, I can do so much more.
I will never be the fastest but I will always finish! I realized that there are so many opportunities out there to help people with their challenges while also challenging myself. There are races to run or volunteer for. There are teams whose sole purpose is to support others through health and wellness programs. In December 2014, I became part of Team RWB (which supports veterans) and found that there are so many ways to support and encourage our fellow human that revolve around the running culture.
Why do I run? I run because runners are some of the most encouraging and big-hearted people I’ve ever known. I run because I can!”