Running for a charity: how it started
This is my first article for a reason: running for a charity has also been the starting point of my journey as a runner.
I won’t tackle the challenge of raising money for a charity in this post (it will be for some other time), but just explain what started it all.
Back in 2015, I joined the Round the Bays run in Auckland with some colleagues. This is an 8.4km long and completely flat run that usually happens on the 1st Sunday of March. The course is quite nice, along the bay of Auckland, and the 2015 edition was particularly sunny. It was the first time I enrolled for a run of more than 5km, so I trained a bit during the previous week and felt ready. I went, I ran, done. I didn’t expect to do it again.
A year later, my friend Kevin was visiting us in New Zealand. He is always up for a challenge (especially sporty ones), so we entered together, but this time I gave a few bucks to Cure Kids when entering the event. A few days later, they called me and asked me if I would agree to raise money for them for this event. If I exceeded a certain amount, they would give me a Tshirt. Having a little girl myself, I was interested in the cause and since I had never been involved with a charity, I decided to give it a go. I was able to raise a few hundred dollars for them, they gave me a nice Tshirt and invited us to their post-event barbecue.
While we were all enjoying a well-deserved beer and sausages, they told me that they were looking for runners for the Auckland Marathon in October 2016. They would pay for my entry and give me support and goodies if I was able to raise more than a certain amount. I could either choose the Marathon or the Half Marathon distance, making it a double challenge: reaching the fundraising goal AND being able to run the distance.
My thoughts were racing and my brain was warning me:
“Wait a minute! You just struggled running 8.4km… You have never run more than 10km. How do you expect to run 21?”
But then pride took over. And I probably wanted to show off in front of Kevin.
“I’ll do it. Where do I sign up?”
And this is how it all started. Planning my training, joining events, reading blogs, articles, books, buying gear. The whole shebang. After a few months, I was hooked. And still am.