Yes, i am running the Boston Marathon next year. I'm doing this crazy thing on behalf of an amazing organization, 261 Fearless. I would so appreciate you helping me cross the finish line with your financial support. Read on to learn more why this has become my mission.
I have come to realize this - I have a lot to be thankful for.
Four years ago, I wasn't so sure.
I was a little stressed. Not fit. Lacked motivation. Worried about others before myself. I had great people around me, but I was in my own little bubble and didn't see in myself what others saw in me. And BOY, did I have every excuse in the book for why I couldn't change my habits. Rather, wouldn't change.
It took a photo of me with some friends at a holiday party to wake me up and start me down a path of healthier choices.
That, and a brand new running group called the Bixby Knolls Dawn Joggers.
Running. That was a funny one to me. I hated running. Made fun of it. Especially those dolphin shorts.
And yet, when I learned the reason for why the BKDJs got started, I got over my negative, judgy self and decided to join those who were afraid to run in the dark for fear of what they'd encounter (and hey, at least it'll be harder to see me there, I thought). And in the process, I created a little athlete out of myself, in my mid-40s, one that was dormant for a long time. And in 10 months, in combination with tracking my calories, I lost 67 pounds and 4 sizes. More on that here:
The spirit of the BKDJs is amazingly reminicent of another incredible group, I've gotten to know over the last couple of years - 261 Fearless, a global non-profit organization founded by running pioneer Kathrine Switzer. You may recognize her name - she is the first female to run the Boston Marathon. She almost didn't get to, when a race organizer tried to pull her off the course due to her gender. These days 261 Fearless uses running as a vehicle to empower and unite women globally through education opportunities, the creation of local 261 running clubs, communication platforms and events.
Sounds familiar, doesn't it!
Running has changed my life in many ways. Helped me realize greater athletic potential than I ever thought possible. It has improved my sleep. Increased my stamina. Made me a better mom and partner. A more motivational boss. Has introduced me to some of the most amazing people I have had the esteemed privilege to know.
And has served as a launch pad for other feats of strength. Since running varying lengths, I've also done century bike rides, swims, triathlons, and am training for a half Ironman while also training for this mega opportunity, the Boston Marathon!
I turn 50 in 2020. They say when you get older, you lose your filter. So....
This is a message for those who are on the fence. Who, when I suggest running (at whatever length or pace) as a potential pasttime to fitness, shake their head. I was YOU. I was you ALL.DAY.LONG. And yet, if I miss a couple of days of walking fast or running slow, I feel like I'm out of my mind. If such a positive turnaround in health and wellness can happen to ME, it can happen to YOU. And if I can help it, I want to completely support the group whose sole mission is to support women like me.
Please support my quest to help women get out there and experience a joy like no other, regardless of social, religious or geographical background. To bring women around the world together through a supportive network and share strength with each other. To support and talk to each other, encouraging healthy living and a positive sense of self and fearlessness.
The creation of 261 communities for women leads to positive and fearless transformations. Any amount helps toward my goal to enable this to happen. Thank you for your support, now and always!
Love, Your Friend Maura
Learn more about 261 Fearless at www.261fearless.org