I came to (Students Run Philly Style) with the intention of giving my child a reason to get off the couch. Alisa (LeLe) needed something to do physically. She didn’t play conventional sports: basketball, soccer, field hockey or the likes. Alisa sat around the house watching television or complaining about being bored. Little did she know her life was about to change drastically, and so was mine.
I met some students who were running Broad Street and I had this idea for my daughter: Why not sign her up? She balked. Being the parent I exercised my rights and persuaded (forced) her to join. It was simple, she had to do this for at least one year, or her life would get hard: no phone, no shopping, no television just a few simple things.
A team was formed; we had four members Alisa ,Natasha, Dennis and myself. The challenge was to get our two students to run, as you see they are girls, and what works best….(BOYS)….we introduced and baited them with the other students (boy type)…they were interested really quickly. We started slow, but our steam picked up in a hurry. The girls ,being girls, put style into their running dressing differently with things like matching and different color socks to bring attention to themselves.
The key was they were running; and we had a team… My life changed at this point the reality of I had a daughter. Our team continued to grow.
With this growth came new horizons. What started as something to get my daughter involved evolved into something for me. New students, new leaders, and more importantly, a host of new friends.
Over the years, I always thought I was giving to someone else, boy was I fooled. So much more has been given to me. I have bonded with so many people and have had an uncountable number of laughs and pleasures because of Students Run Philly Style, even through all the growing pains, challenges, and commitments of time. I would not want to change or take away any of the fun and pleasure I have had. This has been a joy ride and I’m glad my ticket got punched.
Something else tops this list: when you see a student from the past. If you ever have the pleasure of having a student tell you how running has helped to change his or her life or how it has help to mold them into the person they are today…you can get really (I’m not the type) mushy. This happened this past weekend.I was in a shop and someone came up to me and introduced herself …she told me she runs for a club that are supporters of Students Run and couldn’t remember my name but knew that I ran with Student Run and just wanted to say hi and wish me well. My day was made. This is what the last ten years has meant and given to me…so from a kid who never wants to grow-up…continue to put one foot in front of the other and continue to go farther.