A Good Run, Run for Good

 

Finally, the warm weather is here! It seems like winter has been dragging on and on. But now the sun is shining, car windows are rolled down and coats are being shed in favor of t-shirts and skirts. More skin is showing…wait, that means bikini season is right around the corner. Oh boy, here we go again.

I can’t say warm weather and bikini season has caught me totally unaware. I have been hitting the gym since January as part of my goal to get back into running shape. I have spent a few hours each week thinking about sunny beaches while Lady Gaga spurred me onward. Last year I used the fantastic Couch to 5k program and ran my first 3.1 mile race. Not too shabby and I felt pretty confident in a bikini too.

My workout has really been propelled by that great feeling of crossing the finish line. It’s such a feeling of accomplishment that I didn’t know was possible doing something so out of my element. I am more of a shopping-‘til-you-drop workout girl. But I pushed through three miles and felt great.  The other great part of my running was that I wasn’t just running for myself. I was running in the HomeFront Run for Hope 5k and helping Mercer County’s struggling residents receive the resources they need have a better future. My running helped fund afterschool programs, tutoring services, GED classes and housing for homeless women and children. Talk about a feeling of accomplishment!

So if you’re like me and need a little motivation through competition and a shiny finish line, there are a lot of 5k races in our area that will get you running and also help our community. If the idea of three miles sounds daunting, there are plenty of races over the summer that you can start to prepare for now. The Girl Scouts Heart of New Jersey Take the Lead 5k is in at the end of May in Somerset. This race gives funding to the Girl Scout organizations to help girls gain self-confidence and leadership skills. There are several races throughout June like the fun evening ETS Firecracker 5k which helps out our very own Princeton YWCA and their bilingual nursery school. A great run to do with your family is the ACS Run for Dad on Father’s Day which helps fight prostate cancer. Finally, if you’re looking for more of a challenge, Princeton Healthcare has their annual 10k through the streets of Princeton on June 5th . You get to run Prospect Ave and on the Princeton University track!  So make your goal this spring to feel good on the inside and out and run for a cause.

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Kendall Haring is a native Princetonian and is living in the area again after attending college outside of Washington, DC. She loves her job planning activities for seniors at a local assisted living, volunteering and exploring New Jersey and beyond. She believes in waking up happy and positively impacting everyone she meets. You can read more about her journey to lead a positive life and just have fun at The Lemonade Stand


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