As I embarked on a nice and easy 8 miler last weekend to warm up for the real training ahead, I had a thought while passing over the Taylor-Southgate bridge (other than how dirty the Ohio River looks on a sunny day). For some reason I just felt fortunate to be healthy and able to take on a commitment like my second full-marathon. Not everyone has the chance to push themselves like that.
I think I can attribute this brief moment of thankfulness and clarity to my involvement with the St. Jude Heroes program. Candidly, when I picked up this cause it was solely to get a spot in the Chicago Marathon ( I missed the small window to secure a number through general registration). As I’ve gotten more into my fundraising activities, seen the early support I’ve received from family & friends, interacted with the St. Jude staff and read the moving stories in the team e-newsletters – that has drastically changed.
We all have daily stress (money, time management, relationships..etc) and it may seem like a sacrifice for me to stay in on a Friday night so I can get up early to run 12-20 miles on Saturday morning – but if that's my main sacrifice, I'm a blessed guy.
The kids impacted by the gifts contributed to the Heroes program have to deal with stresses like, hospital visits, needles, radiation, chemotherapy and surgeries. That’s real. That reminds me to be thankful for every aspect of my life…even the stressful ones.
I’m very thankful to those who have supported St. Jude already through my Chicago Marathon effort. As I start ramping up the mileage this summer, I am motivated each step of the way by your support. More importantly, your support helps to provide kids with cutting edge care while they take on real life challenges and their parents don't have to worry about their ability (or inability) to pay.
As of today, we’ve raised $495 so far on the way to $1,000 (or more). If you have not yet had the opportunity to join me on this adventure, I invite you to do so by visiting www.mystjudeheroes.org/kirbyuc and cliking "donate now"
Please also check back here to kirbyneumann.com for more updates along the way!
All the best,