I am not a marathon runner…probably never will be…but I do like to run 3 1/2 miles or so a couple of times a week and last night, I took part in the JP Morgan Chase Corporate Challenge in Boston. The ’Challenge’ is an annual series of 3.5-mile (5.63 km) road footraces owned and operated by JP Morgan Chase, with an intended focus on promoting “fitness in the workplace,” as well as raising money for non-profit organizations. The last time I ran it was in 1997 in New York. For various reasons, I hadn’t had the opportunity to run it again until last night and I’ll tell you, there were lots of good feelings all around.
The majority of the course is on Commonwealth Avenue in Boston, where after a mile and a half or so, you literally make a major U-Turn and pass by the thousands of runners going in the opposite direction. At one point, the course takes you through a short ‘Under-Pass’ where participants running in both directions cheer loudly. This is where it hit me. Seeing and hearing the wave of runners who were all there for the same reason was truly awe-inspiring, not to mention motivating. I felt part of something much bigger than myself. Something that was purposeful. Something that was impactful.
At this moment, it dawned on me why people like to race in marathons, participate in triathlons and even work towards competing in the Iron Man. There is something really invigorating about ‘running with a pack’ and even more so when you know there is a good cause attached. Participating in fitness events that also have a socially responsible mission really gets to the heart of balanced living. It is an integrated approach…it is holistic…it addresses the mind, the body and the soul. So, next time there is a reason to be active and to attach it to a cause, go for it. You will be inspired. You will be motivated. You will be physically and mentally satisfied.
What cause related fitness events have you participated in?