Forever a grateful runner
Thanksgiving is the time of year where everyone takes a step back to reflect on the most important things in their lives and what they are thankful and grateful for. Since coming to UD, I’ve found that I have become more grateful everyday through the simple luxury of running with UD Running Club.
When I decided to join the club my freshman year, I didn’t know what to expect. Despite sweating profusely and having the realization that my runner’s stamina wasn’t the same as it was in high school, I continued showing up to all the practices. It was the people and loving camaraderie that kept me coming back.
Now, as a senior and president of the club, I have seen the rapid growth in the number of members over the past few years. Starting out, we were just a small, yet close-knit group of 12 members. Today, the club has expanded to more than 40 consistent members – something I had originally thought to be impossible.
Running with my clubmates and close friends has become something that I thrive off of and I don’t know what I’ll do without them after graduating. Running Club is one of the most welcoming clubs on campus and my college experience would have been empty without it. In high school, I had feelings of dread anytime I had to lace up my shoes for basketball practice or put on my cleats for softball, but when I’m lacing up my running shoes, I’m filled with joy.
...when I’m lacing up my running shoes, I’m filled with joy.
Whether it’s running long distances, playing ultimate frisbee, getting ice cream together or going to 5K races in rental vans, Running Club is one of the things in my life that I have not grown tired of. Our group has a plethora of inside jokes and funny memories from our daily shenanigans – like the time when I accidentally took a turn down the wrong street during our usual six-mile Saturday route. Everyone teased me afterwards for having added an extra mile-and-a-half to the route where we ended up passing a nearby Chick-fil-a – and the phrase "at least I didn’t run to the Chick-fil-a" was coined in my honor amongst the club members.
This semester has been the most memorable for our club and it has significantly contributed to the many experiences that I will never forget. Some of our greatest accomplishments as a club included our men’s team beating a Division III cross country team at an invitational; setting up a merchandise store through our partnership with Runners Plus on Brown Street; and having our biggest 5K attendance turnout for the recent Christmas in Springboro race.
It’s reaffirming to know that many of the members share the same deep love for the club as I do. We don’t just hang out while getting our miles in, we bond over getting smoothies after practice, playing Just Dance until 1 a.m. and getting lunch together every Friday in Kennedy Union.
Once I graduate and leave UD, I know that when I talk about my college memories, they will be filled with the glorious moments from being an active member in Running Club. This organization helped shape me into the person I am today and has given me some of the most meaningful friendships I could have ever imagined. When my family inevitably asks me what I’m thankful for this year, they’ll have no choice but to tell me to stop talking so much about my love for Running Club.