On September 19th, 2010 I raised $1500 for animal charity in my Race For The Critters , and on May 29, 2011 in my 2nd Race For The Critters, I raised $500 for the critters!
Lets do it again!
The inspiration for My Race For The Critters was born from a sense of gratitude. I’d been jogging fairly consistently over the last few years, and although I wasn’t covering extremely long distances, I was getting out on the roads every other day or so. When my mother passed away in February, after a long slow "dwindling away", I worked out my feelings of grief and loss by running on our country roads. My friend Mark Hundley, who wrote Awaken to a Good Mourning, suggests we become a new person when we begin to climb out of the dark valley of grief and back into the light of living. As I was out running one morning, a month or so after mom passed away, I was suddenly bowled over by a strong sense of gratitude! I was grateful that I could still run at age 51, that I could run in such beautiful countryside, I felt grateful for many things. I wanted to give back somehow. Then an idea just hit me: I’d run for the critters! I could set a goal of running a six-mile race while raising money for animal charity! That is exactly what I did.
Over the next six months I slowly built up my jogging miles. Getting out every other day meant I ran in some pretty wild weather. It gets cold in New England!
I often wore two hats, two pair of gloves and a crazy "Darth Vader" mask to prevent the bitter cold air from triggering my mild asthma. Still I determinedly trained through deep snow of winter, the cold rains of spring and the steamy heat of New England summer.
I have a precious little rescue dog who I consider my "running coach". She never fails to coax me out on our run no matter what the weather, and she is always determined and happy on the road. She has urged me along many times by her enthusiasm.
Once I set up My Race For The Critters webpage, and began "tweeting" about my race, donations began pouring in! What a pleasure it was to send the money along to the animal charities I chose to support. I even got to sponsor one particular dog in special need of help. Look for "KJ" (near the bottom of the page) here
The entire project was a resounding success, both for myself as a runner (I finished second in my class) and as a passionate advocate for animal charity. I am deeply grateful!
Below are some of the images from race day, Sept. 19th 2010 The George Coope Memorial in Race Adams Mass.
Anxiously waiting for the race to start:
About halfway through the six mile run...still smiling:
My sister Mickey and my beautiful daughter were there to cheer me on!
My "Prize" (although I felt I already won days before when I reached my goal of $1500 for animal charity):
The Second Run For The Critters, At the finish line:
Lets do it again in September 2011!