Friday, August 17, 2007

Build, Build, Build

The week after vacation is always rough. Add to it that it was the second week of our strength-building phase of marathon training, and it can quickly become a near disaster. I'm thrilled to report that I'm still alive and kicking.

So this week there have been a lot of Race with Purpose team members in pain. They are tired, sore, and many of them can't fathom taking one more step. Yet, they do. They still show up to practice and submit themselves to tempo runs in dreadful weather conditions. Heat and humidity are no friends to runners. Living in DC for the last few years, these conditions are no more welcome in my life than they were when I was living in the Northeast, but they've just become part of the deal. I guess I'm actually adjusting to the swamp life that is the South.

Tomorrow is the team's Rockefeller Run in Sleepy Hollow, NY. It's one of our favorite training sessions of the year and such a treat for those who spend most of their time running in circles in Central Park. The wooded, hard-packed trails twist through pure nature in all its glory. You can instantly forget that you're only a few miles north of New York City. It's a hilly, challenging place to run, so for those who are in pain, it won't be an easy 11 miles. But these are the workouts and the weeks of training that count when you step to the starting line of the marathon -- there's no doubt in your mind that you've done absolutely everything you can to prepare yourself for the only race that matters this season.

Pam Block sporting our new team singlet
Photo: Bob Scofield (

It's amazing to finally see our team come together and almost surreal to see them all gathered, wearing Race with Purpose singlets (in the most neon atomic orange color we could find -- there's no missing us!). I guess part of me never thought the day would come that the organization would "exist" like this. Then again, I realize that we only started out on this crazy endeavor at the end of January. It's truly remarkable to know how much you can achieve when you want it badly enough. Passion for anything, whether it's a cause, a sport, or your career can propel you to some amazing success. As for Race with Purpose...we still have a long way to go, but I am thrilled with how far we've come and excited about where we might go.

Here's to another weekend of hard work and good fun. This is what it's all about!

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