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Motivate the next generation: join SoleMates for Girls on the Run

13 January 2014 @ 8:00 AM  / Girls on the Run / Sports / Fitness Blog /

Jamie Helman2
As a national sponsor of the Girls on the Run SoleMates charity running 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.

Today’s story comes from Jamie, who just completed the most magical marathon on earth, the 20th anniversary of the Disney World Marathon, along with her daughter Maddie. Hear how this mother-daughter duo are making every step count and raising funds to help up to 26 girls experience Girls on the Run.

Jamie Helman1
Twenty years ago this month, I ran my first marathon, the Inaugural Walt Disney World Marathon. That same week, my daughter Maddie celebrated her first birthday. She doesn’t remember a thing about it, but she knows the story is unique. First, it was unique in that I could run 26.2 miles 12 months after giving birth while having two other little girls to chase after! Second, Maddie had a tough first year with two hospitalizations and emergency surgeries, one of which was just two weeks prior to the marathon. She spent her first Christmas recovering from abdominal surgery in the infant unit at Riley Children’s Hospital in Indianapolis. Thanks to my wonderfully supportive and loving family, that wasn’t going to stop us from heading to Orlando to complete this dream. My husband chased me around Epcot, Magic Kingdom, and far beyond, hopping from one monorail to the next with a stroller and three little girls in tow. He experienced his own marathon that day!

On January 12, 2014, Maddie’s 21st birthday and the 20th anniversary of the Walt Disney World Marathon, Maddie and I will run 26.2 miles where it all began, “the most magical place on earth.” To commemorate this amazing milestone, we will be running side by side as SoleMates, the adult charity running leg of Girls on the Run. We both share a passion for running and positive self-image through our involvement with Girls on the Run, an after-school program which inspires girls in 3rd--5th grade to be joyful, healthy, and confident using a fun, experience based curriculum which creatively integrates running. Through SoleMates, Maddie is planning to raise $2,100 to mark her 21st birthday and I hope to raise $2,000 in honor of the 20th anniversary of my first marathon. Together, the funds raised will provide scholarships for approximately 26 young girls to participate in Girls on the Run this season! What a wonderful way to ring in the New Year!

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