When a 10K is more than a race

Do you ever really want to do something but keep finding excuses not to do it?

When a 10K is more than a race

I do. A lot. I’m actually the Tom Brady of talking myself out of doing something cool.

For example, there’s this really popular 10K where I live. I hear it’s super fun. I’ve had my sights on that race since I started running a few months back.

But with the race approaching and registration open, I’ve found a few excuses.

It starts early in the morning. I’m not a morning person.

I don’t have anyone to run with.

My knee has been hurting. I’m not sure if I’ll be able to finish anyway.

And then, out of nowhere, there it was in my inbox…a really awesome reason to run…a reason that completely crushed all of my excuses.

I received an email with an opportunity to be part of more than just a race…a chance to join a team of folks who want to show support for one cool dude and one determined organization.

You see, some friends of mine, Wayne and Carice, have a son, Andrew, who has a neuromuscular disorder called Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA). And there’s a group of Andrew’s friends and family running, jogging, and walking in that 10K in his honor in order to raise money and awareness. The youngest team member is 7 years old!

What a great idea!

Chances are you’ve never heard of SMA. I hadn’t either before I met Andrew. But according to FightSMA, an organization that works to support families and find a cure, SMA is “the most common genetic cause of death for young children.”

Here are some facts about the disorder from FightSMA.

Children born with SMA:

  • Fight the odds to live past their 1st birthday
  • Experience severely, and progressively weakened muscles
  • Struggle to walk, stand, sit, eat, move and breathe

Basically, Andrew’s body doesn’t have the muscles it needs. He requires a motorized wheelchair and help just to move his head.

There are glimpses of hope as SMA is considered to be closest to a cure out of all known neurological diseases. But close isn’t a cure, so the fight continues!

While I get frustrated with a little knee pain that causes me to run 4 miles some days instead of 5, Andrew struggles to do everyday tasks that most do without thinking. I wolfed down my lunch yesterday in about four minutes. Eating a meal can take Andrew as much as four hours.

Yet despite all of his challenges, Andrew doesn’t make excuses; he makes a difference. He actively promotes awareness for FightSMA and has helped raise thousands and thousands of dollars.

I told you he was cool!

Andrew is active on social media where he shares his thoughts on everything from sports to politics. He is a fan of the Atlanta Braves, the Dallas Cowboys, and is a Food Network junkie.

Andrew really is one amazing guy, and at the age of 22, he continues to beat the odds.

And that’s why I signed up for the race. That’s why I decided to push all of my (lame) excuses to the side and join that team!

I’m running for Andrew. I’m running for Wayne and Carice. I’m running for children all over the world who battle SMA every day.

I’m running to be a part of something more than a race. And you can be a part of it too.

Here’s how:

  1. Pray for Andrew, Wayne, and Carice. Pray for healing and comfort for Andrew. Pray for success in the small stuff like eating, and pray for a cure.
  2. Donate to FightSMA on our team page here. Our team goal is $10,000. (10K for a 10K!)
  3. Share this post or our team page with your friends and family. Social media is a powerful thing, and with your help, we can crush our goal!

It’s that easy to get involved!

If you’d like to learn more about SMA, visit FightSMA.org.

Thanks for the help! The 10K is March 28th. I’ll let you know how it goes!

UPDATE: The race was amazing! In all, 26 people ran to honor Andrew and more than $14,000 was raised for FightSMA…far exceeding the goal! Thank you so much to all who supported this great cause in so many ways!

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