This morning while out for my Christmas Eve run, I took notice of something that although I see quite often, was particuarly clear today. It seemed to me (and maybe it was just because nobody else was out on the streets), that there were more homeless people in the streets than a normal Monday morning. It was sad but I made a point to smile and greet everyone I saw. During my runs through Raleigh I often times see the same homeless people and I wonder what might happen if I stopped and started a conversation. What if I took time to learn someone else’s story? All of these thoughts this morning reminded me of an awesome nonprofit that we ran a race for a few years ago… Back on My Feet.
Founded by Anne Mahlum in 2007, Back on My Feet (BoMF) is a national nonprofit organization that is dedicated to creating independence and self-sufficiency within the homeless and other underserved populations by first engaging them in running as a means to build confidence, strength and self-esteem. The organization does not provide food nor shelter, but instead provides a community that embraces equality, respect, discipline, teamwork and leadership.
Every July Back on My Feet sponsors the 20in24 Challenge. It is a 24 hour event that includes relay races of different distances as well as an ultra marathon. It takes place in Philadelphia and is basically an 8.4 mile loop around a park. In 2010, I particpated in the Gold Level Relay Challenge. As a team, our goal was to run 126 miles, 25.2 miles per person. We actually came in second place and it was by far the most fun I’ve ever had at a race. We always talk about doing it again but schedules never seem to work out or we can’t get enough people. Personally, I would like to compete in the Platinum Level Challenge which means each person runs 33.6 miles for a total of 168 miles, and all in under 24 hours.
Back on My Feet is a great organization that uses running as a tool to empower people. As a teacher, I believe in empowerment as a tool to create a better life for oneself. I was greatly reminded of that this morning.
Anyone care to join me in July?
Happy Trails and Happy Running,
Running Update: This may sound weird, but I ran a beautiful six miles this morning. There were hardly any cars on the street and very few people out and about. I felt great but tried not to push the pace. Since I didn’t take my day off yesterday and I have a speed workout tomorrow, I wanted to make sure I felt rested. Stats are here.
Tonight’s blog isn’t about running. It can’t be…
Today was probably the most difficult day I have ever experienced as a teacher. Today an entire student body mourned the loss of one of their own, Hogan Teem. Hogan has been the light of my homeroom for the past three years and I am fortunate enough to have seen his smiling face every single morning with this amazing girlfriend. I’m having a hard time coming up with something running related to write about so instead, I want to take a moment to remind myself and to remind the world how kindness trumps all, even in a world that can often seem so evil. Read more
The run club that I started back in May is about three things. First, a healthy lifestyle. Second, empowering women and third, acts of kindess. As the holidays approach, it is a reminder for me to find more ways to incorporate running with doing good in the world. After watching the documentary Run.. last Friday, I wanted to ways to give the gift of running to others. But how? The answer… shoes. I have so many old running shoes, why not donate them to someone whose life might be changed? Read more
I just spent the last 47 minutes watching perhaps one of the most inspiring documentaires I’ve ever seen – at least in my opinion. Being that today is Friday, I went to YouTube in search of some motivational videos. Apparently YouTube is already two steps ahead of me and recommended the documentary Run… Read more
A few weeks ago after a visit with my grandparents, I wrote that tragic accidents aside, I was going to live to be 100 (and a healthy 100 year old at that). I don’t know if I’ll still be running at that age, but I’d like to think so. Heck, if the running gods permit, I’ll be like this lady – 96 and running.
The Indian woman, who was born before World War 1 ended, is taking part in Aritel Delhi Half Marathon on September 30. According to an article posted on The Asian Age Web site, Kaur decided to give running a shot thanks in part to her 75-year-old son, Gurdev Singh, who lives in Canada, and is also a runner. (She started running when she was 90).
When I first read the article (and the many others reporting about Mann Kaur), it seemed to me that she was running the entire half marathon. I spent quite a while trying to find her finishing time, but instead saw this video which made it a little clearer. She ran 4 kilometers of the half marathon – which is still an amazing accomplishment. And in addition to participating in the half marathon, she also holds the gold medal in the 100 and 200 meter events from the World Masters Championships. Mann Kaur reminds me of a point Chris McDougall made in his video – women become better runners as they get older and the distance increases. Kudos to Mann Kaur!!
Happy Trails and Happy Running,
And I would like to leave you with a random quote for the day: “I expect to pass through this world but once, any good, therefore, that I can do, or any kindness that I can show to any fellow creature, let me do it now, let me not defer it, nor neglect it, for I shall not pass this way again.” Be nice to a stranger tomorrow
Today’s blog post is a little different than normal. I mentioned on Friday that I would be writing a post for A Good Run, featuring some cool places in Raleigh, NC. Well today is the day I get to show off my fabulous city. Check it out here. It was impossible to include all the people I am thankful for along the various stops. But I do want the following people to know that I am extremely grateful to have you in my life: Mom, Dad, Toni, Mario, Heidi, my grandparents, all of my other family members, my Run Inspired. chicas, my favorite neighbors – Alysha, Geoff, Susan, Daryl, Amie, and Brian, the Diaz family, Sara, Amber, my restaurant club chicas, my students, my blogosphere friends, my Google+ friends, and the list could go on forever. Thank you all for keeping me motivated and inspired.
Thank you to all the fabulous people in my life!!
And yes, I realize the letters aren’t exactly straight – I tried my best though!
Happy Trails and Happy Running,
And make sure you go read the blog!!