100 Reasons to Run the 2013 Columbus Marathon

100 daysIt’s official: We are 100 days away from the Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon & ½ Marathon!

To celebrate, we asked our friends, fans and followers to tell us why they’re running (or walking!) this year’s race. Below, we’ve compiled 100 of your answers. But, before you dig in, a quick reminder: Both the marathon and 1/2 marathon have sold out for the past six years, and they’re on both pace to do so again in 2013. If you haven’t registered yet, now’s the time: click here! (Or, if you need a little extra motivation first, keep reading!) 

Now, without further adieu, here are our fans’ 100 reasons to run:

  1. I’m running the Columbus Marathon as my first 26 ON my 26th birthday! I run to honor my dad who is only 54 and has suffered from Huntington’s disease for the last 20 years and can no longer walk. I’m running to celebrate my negative genetic test results that told me I don’t share his fate! I’m running to take control of my life and my health for the very first time. I’ve been training for the last 15 weeks, there’s no turning back! (Lindsay Meeker; @traininglindsay)
  2. Because I can, and I will. (Melanie Zeigler Dickman)
  3. My husband and I are running for his brother who was just diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. He is just 37 years old. He was in the middle of training for his first marathon when he was diagnosed, so he is now training for a different marathon……the fight for his life. So we are running because he can’t. (Danielle Houze Crumley)
  4. I’m running my first full as an early 40th Birthday present to myself. I’m healthier and more fit than at any other point in my life, so I’m excited to rock this run! (Sarah Bucy Klinger)
  5. Made a goal in my 5th grade yearbook photo caption to run a marathon someday. Last year, at age 40, I ran my second half in less than 2 hours…after collapsing the year before at the finish of my first. I’m running the full this year to complete a life long goal, inspire my kids to take on a challenge and see it through, be healthier “in my old age”, and just to prove to myself that a seemingly impossible thing can be accomplished. If I walk some, I walk some…but if I finish, it will be an emotional victory and proud moment I will cherish. (Tim Voght)
  6. I’m running the half because my friend Stephanie Markowitz said I could do it! I’ve already gotten up to 6 miles now and I feel like a rock star!! (Jenny Berger)
  7. I will be running my 3rd full and I am not just running to finish this time. I am running with a time goal and PR in mind. I run for health, sanity, love of the sport, to be a role model to my son, for me. (Heather Murray)
  8. When I turned 40 I vowed to be in the best shape of my life and running was how I accomplished that. I’ve been running for ten years, but only got really serious about it in the last year or two. I ran a half marathon this past March (just to see if I could do it and I loved it) and knew then that I had to run a full marathon too. Aim higher, go farther! (Aimee Wolfe)
  9. To get my #5 full under my belt and you guys put on a great race! (Doug Gladman)
  10. This will be my 4th half. Running with 3 friends. We just vacationed in FL and had a blast. We are doing it because we can and to have fun. (Colleen McAdams Rudisell)
  11. 26.2 sticker (William Mount)
  12. BQ baby (Justin Russell)
  13. I am running because I want to keep testing my physical limits while learning what nutrition is necessary for success, keep up my self-confidence/fitness, break mental barriers and (most importantly) enjoy the way it makes me feel. (Katie Strader)
  14. I am running in memory of my uncle Chris who passed away from leukemia this past February (Lydia Nader; @lnader16)
  15. I did my first full marathon in 2009 in Disney World and the Columbus Half the same year and was hooked. I loved the atmosphere and accomplishment. So in 2010 I made an ambitious goal to run the Columbus full marathon every year until 2020 (and beyond if my legs will still do it!). This is the fourth race of that goal. I have run races in several cities and Columbus is, by far, my favorite. (Carrie Carper-Stewart)
  16. I run for 2013 Miracle Mile Patient Champion #26 Princess Madison Reed and her friends. They all have Spinal Muscular Atrophy and the good SMA Researchers here at NCH and OSU are FDA approval away from finding the cure for them. Madison has type 1 SMA the most fatal of them all. She was not supposed to live to see her 2nd birthday and has just celebrated her 16th birthday in Feb. at Disney where I ran the Princess half marathon in honor of her life. I also run because I CAN run for those who can not and hope one day they CAN too. (Michelle Worrellia)
  17. I also run for Shannon O’Malley Sidelinger’s son James Captain. At mile 26 we plan to lead you on in victory for those last .2 miles. (Michelle Worrellia)
  18. Last November I ran my first 5k. After losing 150 pounds and never thinking I could run that far, I ran the whole thing at a farther pace that I ever did. Since then I just keep going further and further. I will be running my first half marathon. (John Vanderhoff)
  19. I’m running my first full! I’ve run 2 half’s and by race day *should* reach the 100lbs lost point. I’m a different woman than I was 2 years ago when I started running and I am SO grateful for everything running has brought to my life. (Jennifer Schreiner)
  20. I will be running the Columbus Marathon– this is my first marathon. I just turned 26 so I’m doing 26 miles for my 26th year! (Cora Kilcoyne)
  21. My running miles are known as “Erin & Evan” miles. Erin and Evan are the reason I power-walked the Columbus Half-Marathon last year and the reason I am running the full this year. Erin is 18 years old and a Cystic Fibrosis survivor. I have know her since she was 5. She calls me “Second Mom.” I spend time with her at NCH when she is admitted to help pass the hours. Evan was born with a giant congenital nevus, which later developed into cancer. On August 18, 2012 at the age of 13, Evan lost his battle against cancer. The Angel Mile holds a special place in my heart now. I am a Nationwide Children’s Hospital Champion again this year. Hopefully one day soon we will be able to run CF and juvenile cancer into the ground! (Beth Thoma Hughes)
  22. Running the full marathon with my brother who was healed of melanoma of the lung and intestine last year. It’s his first marathon “back in the game” with 1-1/2 lungs. (Chris-anne Snyder Phelps)
  23. After watching a 78 year old in Boston get knocked down from the blast, get back up, and finish; I’m officially out of excuses to run my first full marathon. (Kim Willett Spurlock)
  24. Running with my “sole sisters” (Beth, Angie, Laura, Karen, Amanda) for our first full marathon. Motivating each other to accomplish the next big running goal. (Elizabeth Michelle)
  25. I am running in memory of my son Kevin who lost his battle with a brain tumor August 9, 2001 at the age of 17. (Cecelia Mullin)
  26. This will be my first half marathon! I am running for my son, James Tiberius Kirk, who has Spinal Muscular Atrophy, type 1 (the number one genetic killer of children under 2). I run to appreciate the fact that I can push my body to its limits and know that I am using the body God gave to its fullest capabilities. I run in hopes that someday those who can’t even walk today, will run in the future. (Shannon O’Malley Sidelinger)
  27. This will be my first half. I wanna prove that we don’t have to do fab diet or starve yourself to be skinny. We can eat -> run and stay fit and healthy. (Thu Dao)
  28. It’s a flat and fast course so I’m hoping to BQ (@mcktll)
  29. This will be my 5th full marathon this year and I’ll be running this in honor of my niece who’s 4 years old and has Dravet Syndrome. I’ll also be running with my friend, Jennifer Hartman. This is her first full marathon. (Holly Haddox Bollenbacher)
  30. To continue maintaining and celebrating losing 125 pounds! (Lyndsey Maynor)
  31. I’m a oncology surgical intensive care RN and I run for any children’s cause. I love pediatrics and my heart goes out to them and their families. Therefore, I run for the tiny humans! (Ashley Saum)
  32. I’m taking it up a notch to my first full. I’ve done halves so why not do a full, right?! (Adam Kolatorowicz)
  33. I’m running in memory of my son Mathew, the bravest and strongest little boy I’ve ever known! I’m also running to give back to Nationwide Children’s. The people and services there helped make every day of his life special. (Meredith Adams)
  34. This will be my first full! I turned 40 this year, so why not??? (Lisa Hausfeld)
  35. I am running for mile 15 miracle patient Kylie Kandel. Her mom is an inspiration and steadfast example of “oh yes you can.” (Jill White)
  36. It will be my first!! Half course was amazing and I’m super excited for my journey with Holly Haddox Bollenbacher and so proud of my husband John Hartman for doing his first half! (Jennifer Hartman)
  37. In memory of a high school friend who passed away at Children’s Hospital at the age of 15 from cancer. (Courtney Ricker; @cricker1)
  38. Because “are you crazy?” is my favorite compliment. (Sarah Dominguez)
  39. Because a sub 3 hour marathon is still waiting for me and I know Columbus is the place to do it! (Chris Higginbotham)
  40. I guess a marathon is maybe sort of on my bucket list (Betsy Decillis; @decillis)
  41. I have 2 kids under 2 and this is my first race since their births. My goal is to be a good, healthy example for these little ones and this is my kickoff! (Mary Churchill)
  42. My son started his journey with a 69 day stay in the NICU at Nationwide Children’s Hospital. I am completing the ½ in true celebration of not only the wonderful care, and compassion our family received while at Children’s, but also in celebration of what he has accomplished since his birth. (Pamela Schaal)
  43. This is my first half marathon. I choose this one as it runs through my neighborhood and also I feel the kids are such an inspiration. I’m sure I will cry at every mile!! (Jennifer Long Esque)
  44. I am running my first full marathon by myself and for myself. To continue my personal fitness goals and staying healthy. (Chris Rutter)
  45. It’s a landmark event for city of Columbus and the sponsor Nationwide Children’s Hospital. I like to run longer distances. So it’s a natural fit!! It’s also a very moving experience to see patient champions line-up and cheer you – you forget your discomfort when you consider what they are dealing with and gives you courage to do well and finish strong. Besides the runners are one of the best folks to hangout with – what better place to find them? (Nikhil Shah)
  46. Because I can! (Tammy Denise Reeves)
  47. As an adult, I started running again late August 2012 & discovered it helped my migraines tremendously. As luck would have it, I became addicted to the sport and ran my first half marathon in April 2013 in under 2 hours. Can’t wait to try again in Columbus this time! (Traci Bash)
  48. Running is such a wonderful thing physically, mentally and spiritually. (Traci Bash)
  49. Years ago I watched my dad and many others head towards the finish on Park St. Full of joyful tears and cheers, I promised myself I’d do it – and after a great half last year, and developing a running hobby, that goal is mine! (Heidi Snyder)
  50. I’m running the full marathon. This is my second full one. I am running for Skyler Seymour, the Miracle Mile One rep. He’s my cousin. Seeing the struggles he and others like him go through, make me thankful for everything I have. (Jennifer Libben)
  51. I am so nervous and excited! This is my first 1/2 marathon and I am getting up at 5:30 in the morning to train with my mother-in-law. I want to get in great shape! (Nicole J. Gordon)
  52. I want to be able to run a marathon from age 16 to my last year living! (Rocco Lawrence Core)
  53. This will be my first half marathon. I’m doing this with my husband by my side. We run to be healthier for our boys, ourselves, and each other. We run to spend time together!!! (Heather Kremer McCormack)
  54. My first full and I plan to go big. Hoping for a 3:30 and a trip to Boston. Been dreaming of marathons since I was a kid and my parents were running them. (Elizabeth Songer)
  55. I’m running this because I’m grateful for the 2 healthy children I have. And if either were sick, I’d want someone to do the same for us. Last year I ran the half (my first one ever). And each mile encouraged me to finish strong for all the children and their families who came to show support. (Rob Clemens)
  56. Running my first half. Children’s Hospital has done so much for my sick niece and nephew….This is the least I can do to help payback. (Lauren Large)
  57. Because it’s a 26.2 mile party. (Greg Paterson)
  58. I’m running for my daughter who is due October 17th. Just days before the race. (Adam Dowell; @jadam10)
  59. This will be my FIRST (of many) half marathons & I’m running with my Sole Sister, Mindy Broerman! Running a half-marathon has always been on my Bucket List!! I’ve been training & I know that I can/will do it!! Plus I’m ready to prove it to the people who said I couldn’t. 13.1 HERE WE COME!! (Julie Chamberlain)
  60. I’m running the full to have the bragging rights that go along with it. (David Trimble)
  61. I am turning fifty and rejoicing that I can make my body run a half after being injured during a quarter! (Elysabeth Bonar Bouton)
  62. Taking up running 2 years ago at age 54, I thought it would great to return to my hometown and run through some of the neighborhoods I knew as a teenager doing my first marathon… (Keith Kettrey)
  63. I am running the half marathon with my “sole sister.” I am running to prove to myself that I CAN DO IT!!! (Mindy Broerman)
  64. I ran the Columbus Marathon in 2009- my first! I’m doing the full marathon again, this time with my husband! I felt so much accomplishment and pride in myself and my “running buddies” that also completed the marathon! I got the marathon itch again- so, here I come again!! (Jennifer Koning-Peeke)
  65. Trying to break 3 hours!! (Meghan Crosby)
  66. I’m running in honor of my daughter who is 2 1/2 and a NCH kid. She inspires me every day to be my best. She has over come so much!! (Elizabeth Borchers; @eborcher95)
  67. This is my first half marathon! 2 years ago I ran my first 5k and I have been hooked on running ever since. I chose Columbus because many friends have done it and I decided it would be a great first half. I am looking forward to the race in 100 days! (Angela Baker)
  68. A little over a year ago, I started to get into running and my goal was to finish a 5k without walking. Since then, I have lost 45 pounds, finished 2 half marathons, and now I am determined to finish my first marathon!! (Joanna Giannell)
  69. Last year I did the half and was so amazed at how many people not only run for this great cause but for all those lined up along the way cheering us on! This year I’m going for the full! Although I ran 30 miles on my 30th birthday, this will be my first official marathon! (Jenny Merritt)
  70. My first 1/2.. We are power walking it… I want to see what I can accomplish & my goal… to finish! (Tracey Brooks Viereck)
  71. Based upon everything that surrounds this race, I apologize but I am running for selfish reasons. I have always wanted to prove to myself that I can go the distance, I turn 40 this month and I know that I need to improve upon my health. So there is no better time than the present. So far down about 60 lbs and right on track with my mileage! At the same time, when you read the stories about all of the kids and lets you know that there is something much bigger about this race! I have a feeling that sometime in those late miles, it is going to be far more about them, and far less about why I am doing it!!!! (Jeff Reedy)
  72. It was first my first 26.2 marathon and have been running it ever since! (Amy Belden)
  73. Ran my first marathon 7 years ago and this will mark my 33rd. I’m coming back home to OH IO to run this one so my Dad can see a marathon and hopefully see me set a PR! Go Bucks!!! (Thom Bateman)
  74. Ninth year in a row. It’s what October is all about! My kids and I fly out from New York each year and have a blast! See ya soon, Columbus. (Nancy Clark)
  75. Columbus is special to me. I’m an OSU grad (’79) from Upstate NY, and my two oldest sons are Buckeyes as well (’10 and ’12) … ran the full in ’11 and one son ran the half. Wonderful city, great memories, top-notch marathon. (Jim McKeever)
  76. Running my very first full marathon! I ran the 1/2 marathon 2 years ago and it was a blast. I’m beyond excited to try the full! (Lindsey Billingsley)
  77. I am running the full again because I simply don’t want to be left out of the fun. (Jeanine Foster)
  78. To break 1:45 in the half. So my friend has to run it again to beat me. (Craig Ayala)
  79. I am running the 1/2 Marathon because a few years ago I never thought I could! Today I’m training hard and I want to finish! (Edward Stouder)
  80. This will be my first full marathon and what greater reward than to run in the OSU stadium and accomplish a goal all at the same time!  I have run the half and it was an amazing course full of lots of spectators and scenery! Can’t wait! (Melany Mullens)
  81. It’s on my bucket list to do before I’m 25. I turn 25 next May. (Shyla Troyer)
  82. I’ve ran it about 15 times and Darris, you’ve made great improvements to this race making it a must on my schedule! (Chris J. Smith)
  83. To prove that coming back from a devastating injury better and faster than ever is possible! (Mike Pace)
  84. To set a new PR in the half. (Ryan Collins)
  85. This half is so fun, and so well organized, it has become a must-do for me and the Buckeye Striders. And I hope to PR here again for the third year in a row! (Cindi Meter Leeman)
  86. I’m running the marathon as a sense of accomplishment and staying healthy. Plus I can give back to the community at the same time!! (Rachael Barnhart)
  87. For myself (and to blaze past all of my Capital U buddies who have gained about as much weight as I have lost since graduation)! (Jesse Safe)
  88. For the soldiers who paid the ultimate sacrifice (Adam Ingram; @atotheingram)
  89. Because a marathon is on my bucket list and after doing a couple longer runs with a buddy who was training for Pittsburgh this year I just couldn’t wait any longer! (Emily Gardner)
  90. My friend invited me to make this our first full marathon. We wanted to run it together! (Stephanie Yoder)
  91. I am a long time 5k runner and this race will be my first Half Marathon. I am training to go Sub 2 hours… (Greg Schultz)
  92. For this dude right here: Bryer’s Song – he’s a patient champion at mile 21. (Justin Largent)
  93. I’ve run the Flying Pig Half Marathon a few times and I’m excited to run a Half that doesn’t have “big hills” in the middle of it! Looking forward to a flat course! (Dawn Pursell)
  94. In memory of my Uncle Tom who died of cancer in 2011. This year, it’s 30 years since he ran his first Columbus Marathon! (Molly Colian; @mollyc85)
  95. My friend’s daughter passed away in March. I’m running because I want to fulfill a dream in her honor. She had so many dreams left unfulfilled. (Stephanie Dittelberger-Clark)
  96. Because I want to break 3 hours and you are FAST and FLAT. I want to be a shoe in for Boston. Just qualifying doesn’t seem to be enough to get in… (Carrie Gould Hatfield)
  97. My second 1/2 – first one was last year’s Cbus 1/2! (Tari Zumbaugh Clidence)
  98. Because I can at my age, have my health, and want to be my kids hero!!!!!!! (Michael Brock)
  99. This will be my first marathon. I am running for my son, who is a patient at Children’s Hospital, and is getting ready to endure his second open heart surgery. (Jeannette Elfein Zadra)
  100. I was in Boston cheering on my brother, who was running his first marathon. He was running in honor of my daughter who has hereditary spastic paraplegia, a disease that robs people of their ability to walk. I thought he was kind of crazy, but at the same time I was so proud of him. Throughout the weekend prior to the race, there was just this air of excitement permeating the city. As I got my first glimpse of the marathon, I got chills. The streets were lined as far as the eye could see with spectators cheering on the runners. And at 14 miles into the race, they were still running fast! I was in absolute awe. In that moment, the seed was planted; I knew I wanted to run a marathon. The events that transpired later that day only fed this idea of running. My brother was unable to finish the race, which he started training for so many months ago and one which I felt a personal connection to, and this made me angry. The bombing that took the lives and limbs of innocent people was heartbreaking. My brother was running for my daughter, who has great difficulty just walking, and in an instant, more people were left without the ability to walk. So I bought a pair of running shoes and started running. I run for Boston, I run for my daughter, I run because I can. (Karen Prior-Bernard)

Why are you running or walking the marathon this year? Let us know in the comments!


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