Tuesday, August 2, 2011

The Human Factor in the Benefits of Running

I was excited to see my Runners World Magazine September issue in my mailbox yesterday.  I read it cover to cover - I love the training tips, recipes, and inspirational articles.

Runner's World has a regular article called HumanRace which includes "news, trends, and regular runners doing amazing things."  In this issue the article "A Fresh Start" is featured.  It is about an all women's prison running club Running Free at Topeka Correctional Facility in Kansas. The club began in 2007 after a lot of convincing and held their first 5K race in May of 2007.  The club has held 17 races and has 80 members while none of the costs of this club comes from taxes payers and has actually raised $35,000 for charities!Running Free held its first marathon this past May.  Eight prisoners ran the matathon on the .8 mile loop!  That is 32.75 laps!  Amazing!

Co Founder Carol Hill is quoted saying, "I think of running as a metaphor for change."  And change has happened - none of the core members have had any disciplinary sanctions in the past year.

Also in the HumanRace section:
  • Chris Heiert partnered with Cincinnati's City Gospel Mission to train addicts to use running as part of their recovery.
  • Girl Scouts in Massachusetts created a patch girls can earn through running projects.
  • Girls with Sole hosted a 5K for girls in the Cleveland area who have experienced abuse.
  • Fit Girls is a club for 4th and 5th graders that combine running, reading, and kind acts.
Everyone knows the typical benefits of running: healthy heart and lungs, helps lower weight and cholesterol, reduces stress, etc.  It is great to see that running can do so much more - teach important lessons of strength and determination, how to cope with adversity, build self esteem through accomplishing goals, building relationships, and so much more.

Thank you to all of the creative and caring people who have started groups like the ones mentioned and for Runner's World for publishing such great stories!

Click below to go to the Runner's World site to check it out all the running info and to subscribe to the magazine!

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