This post is sponsored by Beyond Monumental. Opinions expressed are my own.
I’ll be honest, the real reason I’m running the CNO Financial Indianapolis Monumental Half Marathon on Nov. 9, is to see my boys cheering me on at the finish line. I haven’t run a race since before I became a mom, and the thought of seeing their excited, smiling faces at the end of 13.1 miles is enough to inspire me to do it. But, it’s more than that.
Setting the example
Growing up, my parents always set an example of the importance of exercise. My brother and I would tag along to my mom’s (always entertaining) aerobics classes, listening to 80s music blaring, and watching our mom hop around with her big hairsprayed hair.
And my dad would head to karate class, or take off on what he called “very slow” 12-13 mile runs sometimes on the weekends. I thought he was totally insane for running that far. But, now that I’m a parent, I get it. It was probably a mini vacation for him.
No quitting allowed
Looking back, the fact that my parents prioritized their health made a lasting impression on me. But, it was more than that. When they signed me up for basketball and cheerleading in elementary school, and I wanted to quit, they wouldn’t allow it. “You made a commitment, Whitney. You’re going to stick it out.” I HATED that. In fact, I’m sure there was plenty of pom-pom throwing, and high top stomping about the fact that they simply wouldn’t let me quit.
And now, I realize what a gift this was to me as a nine-year-old. Their tough love lesson of endurance and grit has fueled me as a runner (and in so many other areas of my life). By not quitting, I realized I was stronger than I thought and that I COULD DO HARD THINGS.
And that’s what I love about the CNO Financial Indianapolis Monumental Marathon. Yes, they focus on running…but, it’s more than that.
Why I love Beyond Monumental
Did you know that Beyond Monumental is a non-profit organization that focuses on youth health and well-being in the Indianapolis area? In fact, they partner with more than 50 schools to teach kids how to train and eat healthy through a seven-to-nine-week program leading up to one of their 5K races (either the Indy Half Marathon at Fort Ben 5K or the CNO Financial Indianapolis Monumental 5K).
Kids who stick it out through the entire training program get free registration – and bragging rights – for their 5K race. They run with teachers, family and classmates to the finish line after all of that hard work and determination. Talk about a lesson in endurance and grit! But, it’s more than that.
I’ve seen kids cross the finish line, and I’m telling you…those smiles, high fives and celebratory hugs are so worth it. Perhaps for the first time, these kids realize THEY CAN DO HARD THINGS. Just like me when I was their age.
I’m looking forward to teaching my boys these lessons when things get tough. And I truly can’t wait to see their sweet faces at that finish line on Nov. 9. When they’re a little older, I hope they choose to run toward their own finish lines, too. Maybe they’ll decide to run the CNO Financial Indianapolis Monumental 5K or the Monumental Kids Fun Run.
Register today with these special codes – for you and your kids!
If you want to see the smile, give those high fives and hug your kid at the finish line, then sign them up FOR FREE (ages 4-14) for the Kids Fun Run on Nov. 9 using my code YOMAMAKIDSRUN. Hurry and register today because once the remaining spots fill up, registration will close.
And if you aren’t quite ready to tackle a half or full marathon, but still want to show your kids an example of endurance and grit, sign up for the CNO Financial Indianapolis Monumental 5K on Nov. 9, and save $10 with my code 5KSAVE10.
Let’s do it for us. Let’s do it for our kids. It’s about so much more than running.
Will I see you on race day?
For more information on the heart behind the Monumental, visit BeyondMonumental.org. To register for the Kids Fun Run, 5K, half marathon or full marathon on Nov. 9, visit monumentalmarathon.com. And when you register, drop me a message so I can be sure to high five you on race day!