We have all heard the above saying related to our academics as M&T students, but why not take it a bit more literally? I did, starting in high school as a distance runner for my varsity cross-country team. It’s no surprise to hear, then, that from my first days on campus, running has been a huge part of my Penn experience.
Thankfully, Philadelphia is a great city for running, so long as you can successfully avoid getting hit by a rogue cab driver. Everyone’s favorite trail-that-never-ends, the Schuylkill River trail, is only a stone’s throw from campus, and even Locust Walk makes for a nice jog now and then. To help find the lesser-known places, I joined the Penn Running Club.
Now, I am the first to admit that I only rarely attend the organized group runs that the club holds every weekday. However, I keep my cardio up with weekly distance runs, including the occasional half marathon. This past fall semester alone I had the opportunity to compete in both the Rock n Roll Philadelphia Half Marathon and the Philadelphia Half Marathon. I posted a personal best time for the 13.1-mile race in September with a time of 1:35:02. Who says M&Ts can’t be athletic?
If you have never had the chance to watch a half marathon, I encourage you to do so. They have an exceptional culture. The Rock n Roll Half Marathon had rock bands play at every mile along the course and a big headliner for a post-race celebration. The Philadelphia Half Marathon finishes in front of the infamous steps of the art museum. Thousands of people come and go crazy cheering in support of us wild enough to be running.
If any of you have a desire to run a race, you will most certainly have at least one companion to run with in me. I currently have my sights set on my first full marathon – the January 2014 Disney Marathon. To mix it up, I’m also looking to train for the Philadelphia Triathlon. Until then, you can find me running around campus, both to class and to races. Feel free to join!