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Saturday, January 4, 2014

Run with a Purpose

I am going to run.  It is by far my favorite form of exercise.  Recently I had two experiences that reminded me that while I am running I can actually help some charities I believe in.  The first I discovered reading my Women's Running magazine.  First of all, if you are a woman I highly recommend this magazine.  It has great tips, gear reviews and inspirational stories.  In the Running Geek article, who could resist, being both a geek and a runner, they were rating best running apps.  The choice that won best overall was not, as may would suspect, the one with the best options for tracking splits or creating training runs and virtual scenarios.  Instead it was the Charity Miles App.  This app is a GPS and accelerometer app that allows you to select a charity from an approved list and all of your mileage for that run equates into a donation to that charity.  I usually choose the ASPCA, what a huge surprise!  Sometimes I run for Feed America or The Nature Conservancy.  There are about 15 charities to choose from.  I love the app, because I am going to run anyway, now while I am doing something good for myself I am doing something good for others also. The app is paired up with corporate sponsors who have pledged to provide the equivalent donation.  I started sharing this via Facebook and several of my runner friends are now doing it.  Think of the compound factor if more of us downloaded the app and just went out and ran like we do anyway.  I highly recommend you check it out. 

The other experience happened today.  So we have a lighter race season because ATC really made some big changes. We did not have a planned race until February.  Then a friend messaged us on Dailymile and suggested we run a little local race about 150 people, The Wonderful Days of Winter 5K.  It is to benefit a pre-school for under privileged kids run by a large Marietta Church.  The race was close to home and only $15 without a shirt.  We don't need another shirt.  We agreed.  It was cold today, but the race was an incredibly warm experience.  It was all community folks and the pre-school students were there.  The HILLY course took us through Marietta's beautiful, historic, tree lined neighborhoods and past my old high school, now a middle school.  The race was not crowded and everyone volunteering felt so close to this charity you could tell their appreciation was genuine.  My husband teaches at an elementary school with an under privileged student body so we were passionate about this.  We usually run club races or really big local races and today was such a great experience it reminded me of how important it is to add these community races to our schedule, where you can really see the people you are helping.  It was a great race.  Hubby and I have not been training, really just running easy since November.  We ran together.  He finished 4th in his AG and I finished 3rd, but the race really wasn't about that.  I think this may be a regular for us. 

Today I am grateful that I rediscovered what it feels like to be a part of the community and give back.


  1. I ♥ Charity Miles, too. Though, sometimes I forget it start it. :(

    1. Since I usually run with ISmooth I try to just start both together! I forget too.