Why run?  Especially when nobody’s chasing you?

There are lots of reasons……to challenge yourself, to get in shape, or to hangout with friends.  But for some, it’s their way to give back.  Folks like Barry Falcon, whose son has lived with Type 1 Diabetes for the last 12 years, runs for JDRF, the #1 funder of Type 1 Diabetes research in the US.  He runs to raise awareness for the disease and money for research.  “I’m running the 2014 Boston Marathon so that I can make a difference in the life of my son, and the lives of other living with Type 1 Diabetes.”

Julie Smith, who runs for Team in Training, says, “Running for a cause makes doing what I love so much more meaningful! The miles I run represent the distance a cancer patient must cover on the road to recovery, and thinking of what they endure makes me push harder, as if I can somehow take some of their pain. When I want to quit, I remind myself that they can’t! And if doing what I would do anyway can help fund a cure? All in!!”

“Having charities involved in our April Fool’s event means a great deal to me as a race organizer.  More than numbers, the running community supporting a non-profit are some of the most passionate runners in the crowd.  They bring drive, determination and stories to the event that otherwise wouldn’t be there” states Atlantic City Marathon Group Race Director, Genia Bittner.

And the opportunities are endless.  Whether you want to walk a mile, run a 5k, or a 1/2 or full marathon, there are races for you.  Most major events have partnered with one charity or another, to provide assistance in fund raising, as well as outreach and awareness, for the charity.  However, if your goals or training aren’t quite as ambitious, most local 5k/10k events also are fund raising efforts.  A local Logan Township, New Jersey event, Mikes Miles Cedarvale Winery 5k for JDRF, highlights a combo road/off road course that winds through Cedarvale Winery’s vineyards.  This event features a 5k and 1 mile fun run for kids, and is family oriented and fun.  With a 10am Saturday start time, it’s easy to get to and still allows for the honey do list on Saturday afternoon. 

So, if you’re an experienced runner, or just getting back into shape, you have the ability to focus on your fitness goals and give back to the community.  There are many reasons to run, and regardless of your reason, the opportunities are endless. 

 If you have any questions, you can ask a friend who runs, or reach out to me at ken@gooddayforarun.com and I’ll point you in the right direction.