Run with meaning

In the Spring of 2007, running the London marathon, I raised $6000 for a charity that supports emerging Afrian nations.  I did it because my neighbor asked and I worked in the emerging markets.  The charity meant something to me.  In fact, raising this money meant so much to me that I ran the marathon on a painful injury.  It took almost five hours, but I ran it anyway.

A lot of marathons are put to use for fund raising.  In fact, I now get so many requests to donate to this friend’s event or that friend’s event, I can hardly keep it straight.

According to the Nike website, since Team In Training’s inception in 1988, more than 360,000 participants have raised over $850 million. Last year TNT raised $18.5 million dollars through The Nike Women’s Marathon alone.  That’s a lot of dough for a good cause.

I just joined the Lance Armstrong Foundation, LIVESTRONG, and plan to run their San Jose Challenge next summer.  There is a two-time cancer survivor near and dear to me, and a close family member who was diagnosed with breast cancer just last Thursday.  Cancer runs, and fundraising, and yellow wrist bands, and pink ribbons suddenly mean something to me.

Susan G Komen for the Cure leverages multiple runs to raise money.  If you are running one anyway, why not do a little bit more, that will ultimately do a lot more.  Talk about ROI.

I believe fund raising works when your heart is in it.  Often, that means you’ve been touched by something unpleasant.  Use that experience.  Use your feet.  Ping your friends. Beg your family.  Hit up your boss.

All this fundraising really works.  It’s part of the reason why 1 in 8 women (think of your neighborhood street…count every 8th house and you’ll get the picture) are diagnosed with breast cancer, but 34 out of 35 survive.

We run all the time for ourselves.  At least once a year,  run for someone else.


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