Good morning everyone! I am a bundle of nerves over here- my first half-marathon is on Sunday! 😀 I ran my last run before the race last night- an easy 3.5 miler. Unfortunately, I’ve been having a bit of a foot issue lately. When I strike down with my right foot, I feel a dull pain. After some googling (doesn’t everyone play Dr. Google?) a few weeks ago I narrowed it down to a stress fracture (unlikely, seeing that the pain isn’t intense) and a bone spur. Maybe I’m just tying my shoes too tight. In any event, I am keeping my fingers crossed that my foot doesn’t go crazy and allows me to cross the finish line!
So, onto the topic at hand. I first learned of Girls on the Run from Caitlin’s blog. I’ve been reading Caitlin’s blog since March of 2009 and have learned a lot about running and eating well from her daily posts. She is really inspiring! Caitlin is one of the bloggers that showed me that I can be a runner if I put in the effort 😀 Naturally, my interest was piqued when she posted about the Girls on the Run Solemates program back in August. What, exactly, is the Solemates program?
Girls on the Run seeks to educate and prepare young girls for a lifetime of self-respect and healthy living through running. The program’s vision looks to:
- Support a network of Girls on the Run councils across the country
- Provide a life-changing experience for girls and women
- Promote an environment that allows girls and women to reach their full potential
- Enhance the lives of all involved in the program
- Assist in nothing less than a complete transformation in the way girls and women perceive themselves and their opportunities in life (source)
Sounds pretty awesome, right? I think it would be an amazing experience for a young girl to meet with a group of her peers to learn about healthy living from exemplary role models. Talk about an inventive way to boost self-esteem! 😀
I immediately wondered what I could do to help the organization. This is where the Solemates program comes in. Essentially, after paying the initial $26 fee, a runner or athlete running a race signs up to raise money for Girls on the Run, pledging to raise $262, the deadline being the month before their race. This money fully funds the admission of two girls into the Girls on the Run Program. Once you sign up, you get your own fundraising page and get to fundraisin’!
I knew that I could meet this goal with the generous support of my family and friends, so I jumped at the chance to sign up and become a Solemate. Less than a week later I had a really cool welcome package with a very flattering tech tee that I plan to wear with pride on Sunday (sans hat, obvi).
Thanks to my family and friends (and the power of facebook :D) I was able to meet and surpass my fundraising goal quickly. I may or may not have enticed people to donate with the promise of homemade cookies from me :p. Of course, they would have donated regardless 😀 Participating in Girls on the Run makes my first half-marathon that much more important and special to me. I feel honored to be involved in such a great cause. If you are running a race in 2010-2011 (a 5k, 10, triathlon, marathon- any type of race!), I encourage you to look into Girls on the Run! Many thanks to Caitlin for introducing me to Girls on the Run 🙂
Other options for getting involved with Girls on the Run include becoming a coach and mentor to a group of young girls. I think that sounds really fun but unfortunately, the closest one to me is an hour away. Normally, this wouldn’t be a problem but I commute an hour in the other direction. I have to look into it more though- if there are weekend programs available I am in (if they’ll have me, of course!)
Have you ever ran for a charity? My blog buddy Linzi is running her first marathon next weekend and has collectively raised over $9,000 for The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society! That is seriously amazing. Linzi, you rock girl!
Have a great weekend my friends!