It is hard to put into words what it meant to be a part of team 261 Fearless and run the New York City Marathon. I am a solitary runner. Most of my miles are logged on rural roads, often in the darkness of early morning with nothing but my thoughts to keep my company. During these quiet miles I often wondered what I could expect when I finally arrived in New York City to be a part of the team. It exceed all expectations, to say the least. Upon meeting the other members of the team, the was instant camaraderie. Perhaps it was emotion of meeting Kathrine for the first time or the buzz of the adidas store right in the heart of Midtown but it was immediately clear that this was not to be a typical race experience for me - or any of us.
We had the amazing opportunity to start the race with Kathrine which afforded us a view of a marathon, I have never had the joy of witnessing. We watched as the elite athletes warmed up, mingled with other high profile runners and best of all enjoyed the moment together, with Kathrine who continuously went out of her way to show her appreciation to us all for being a part of the day with her. Watching the elite runners take off was second only to crossing the start line with Kathrine and as a team. It will forever be a highlight in my running life.
The marathon itself, was glorious. The spectators were among the most enthusiastic I'd seen. Their energy was sustaining. Running among people from all different backgrounds, alongside blind runners and amputees, those running in memory of a lost friend or loved one gave me a sense of great hope for our troubled world. All differences aside, together, we were runners.
But it was getting to know the fine, strong women of 261 Fearless that really was the highlight of the weekend for me. We came together from all different running backgrounds. Whether it was a first marathon, or a 90th; a twenty-something runner or a runner into her 70's, our love of running and desire to spread that message to women throughout the world united us in a way I couldn't have imagined on those long training runs. Through our time spent together, we made what are sure to be life long connections. We met as strangers but left a part of a unique sisterhood.
I am still playing the scenes of the weekend over and over in my mind, but also looking ahead at how else I can continue to grow my passion for running into a means of connecting with others and helping others to fall in love with running. I look forward to my continued connection and involvement with 261 Fearless and seeing where my running shoes take me next!Become part of our Team 261 Fearless and share with us our mission of empowering women through running! Your fundraising efforts support the global nonprofit organization 261 Fearless Inc. in bringing social running clubs to local communities – in the US and beyond. Together we will make a huge impact by changing women’s lives!By joining our Charity Team you will experience a rewarding journey – leading up to an unforgettable weekend in New York City where you'll celebrate with your teammates and Kathrine Switzer, winner of this iconic race in 1974 and NYRR Hall of Fame inductee.Are you ready for this amazing experience? If you want to be part of our 261 Fearless TCS New York City Marathon Charity team in 2018? Apply now!