Sunday, March 17

McNair Color Runners

We choose to take a "holistic approach" with our scholars.  We want our scholars to do research, go to grad school and get their Ph.D.'s--yes.  But really, we want them to be rock stars in LIFE.  In order to do things--like get your Ph.D. (no big, right?)--you've gotta have it together (on lots of levels).  Baseline--you've gotta be solid in how you take care of yourself.  If you aren't, the foundation from which you do any work or strive for any goal won't sustain you.  I like to say that you have to be solid in the EAT--SLEEP--MOVE categories, if you will.  What does this have to do with being a Color Runner?  Read on...

So, last year, we were talking about how yoga was making us feel stronger. We were talking about having a scholar garden during the summer.  And then Julie started talking about running.  Now, I've never classified myself as a runner--a trotter perhaps--but I'm open to new possibilities.  I was also dabbling with this idea of working with a personal trainer--something that scared me but I knew would be good for me.  I was tired of being a wuss.

Julie started researching 5K's and we thought it might be fun to do it as a group---with the scholars. Not a ton of options locally, she came across the Color Run in Ann Arbor.  Now, if you aren't familiar with the Color Run's (held in most major cities) - check it out HERE.  It's the "happiest 5K on the planet" -- for sure!!

Running partners for life!
We do yoga on Wednesday's together during the summer--the luxury of consistency during the summer is spectacular.  Besides yoga, a couple of the scholars started training for the 5K (Katelyn was our leader!) and started sharing how it's going.  Julie and I took this inspiration and started running more.  Julie did her first 5K in June!  Even though some scholars weren't "especially keen" on the idea, they were willing to come along as "Color Walkers" (there's always a ton of those!) and to cheer the group on.  What was cool is that we had a group goal (of doing the Color Run mid-July) and we had something to look forward to.  I had never done a run despite being surrounded by runners--my husband Ken, his brother, his Dad--all marathon-type runners. Luckily my training sessions really helped strengthen me and build my confidence in this regard.

Turned out that one of dear mentors--Dr. Shelly Hinck--came along too!  What a treat!  We went down the night before and hung out in Ann Arbor.  What a treat!  We had shirts made up that said, "We Are McNair" -- pretty cool.  We felt pretty cool.  People tend to "go all out" at these Color Run's - you start out in white (accompanied by such embellishments as tutu's and tube socks) and then you end up -- in FULL COLOR.  The best part (perhaps?) is the end where everyone gathers and releases all of their remaining color and dances around and is HAPPY.  Did I mention it's the happiest 5K on the planet?  :-)

All in all--what a great activity to add to our repertoire of McNair activities--all meant to feed into our "group growth" and "empowerment."  We posted on Facebook (of course) and a ton of McNair alumni commented on how they wished we would have done that when they were in the program. So we decided to make it an annual event and invite anyone who wants to attend with us to come out and "Be McNair."

I know Shelly's in and I'm working on some of our other mentors.  McNair alumni--come back to Michigan for a visit and be a McNair Color Runner!!  Our 2013 group--I'm expecting you to be in!! Maureen said she's going this year too!  Julie is already working on her speed and Kim just started running with her personal trainer.  Too cool!  Me?  I want to start running more (if the snow ever goes away) and my goal is a 10-minute mile (this is a good pace for me, a bit of a stretch, but achievable).  Later in the summer I'm planning on doing a 10K.  The Color Run will be great prep!


1 comment:

  1. yay yay I want to run again this summer with you all!


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