As a national sponsor of the Girls on the Run SoleMates charity runner program, Garmin is partnering with this great organization to further their mission and share the stories of the women and men who are “running for a reason”. Runners can sign up for any event — runs, walks, bike rides or triathlons — and raise funds that will support their chosen council of Girls on the Run. Want your next race to help change lives? Find out more here. This month’s story comes from Daryl, who truly went the distance for a good cause. Daryl completed the Ironman St. George triathlon in Utah on May 7, 2011. And here’s his SoleMates story.
Someone asked me the other day, "So tell me again...WHY are you doing this?" Good question. I'm a relative newbie to the sport of triathlon, and for the past two years I have enjoyed the cross-training, the demands it puts on your body and the overall challenge. However, training for an Ironman is extremely time-consuming. It can be a selfish, narcissistic sport at times and is a sacrifice that not only the athlete takes on, but his or her entire family as well. Not all triathletes are selfish, but consider this: for my event on May 7, I trained nearly 7 1/2 months, at an average of 15-20 hours per week, with the unwavering support of my family through along the way.
Do I feel selfish? I sure do. Am I grateful? I sure am. How can I show my appreciation? By doing something that means more than just completing an Ironman. By doing something for others. The SoleMates program is something I hold dear to my heart. My wife, Mary, is the Executive Director of our local Girls on the Run council. Notwithstanding that detail, I would still be a SoleMates charity runner. I have volunteered at numerous Girls on the Run 5k events, and to witness the girls cross the finish line brings me tears of joy. It warms my heart to see the sense of accomplishment by the smiles on their faces as they finish. I am inspired. I took that inspiration to my Ironman event in May. I did it not only to raise money for Girls on the Run, but to bring awareness to this wonderful program and be able to give back to all who have given their positive words, their advice, their encouragement and their sacrifice to help me finish my very first Ironman. I do this because of them.
Daryl completed his 140.6-mile journey in 12 hours, 51 minutes and had much to celebrate when he crossed that finish line. For sharing his story and impacting the lives of girls through the Girls on the Run SoleMates program, Daryl received a Forerunner through Garmin's trade-in program.