Interestingly, an inclination towards non team orientated sports has superseded the attractiveness of being part of a group of 39 people dedicated to an exceptionally worthy cause in Motor Neurone Disease and ultimately, entering the New York Marathon.
So, why does Jen Gearing wife, Mother of two sons and full time employee in a demanding role in Financial Services take up Marathon Running?
“I have always had a fitness lifestyle before having children, participating in Triathlons, cycling events and numerous fun runs. I work at Suncorp as did Scott so I knew his story, his commitment and his determination to make a difference. Through this, I got to know the MND group and became caught up in the group training and really enjoyed it.
As for marathons, I never wanted to do one so New York will be my first. I was overwhelmed by Sarah’s marathon, running half for her and half for Scott. It was so inspiring. When the team at MND said they were doing New York, I used every excuse to not do it finally falling back to affordability. I said I would do all the training with them and then I said to Michael (Husband) that I want to do New York and we would find the money. He was keen to go to the Rugby World Cup so the deal was done. I was doing New York and he was doing the RWC in London.
But that all changed when he said he would really like to come to New York and run the Marathon for MND instead.”
Jen spoke with emotion about how important MND and ME is to her and the need to find a cure. She spoke with feeling about the “randomness” with which it strikes and how we should never take our health for granted. Her commitment to the cause is equal, if not greater than her commitment to training for New York.
As to what Jen is expecting in New York on Marathon morning, she imagines the excitement, the noise, the throng of so many people and their own individual emotions and expectations. Jen referenced the anticipation of running through iconic areas of New York and past places of historical importance. She spoke of imagining the feeling as she crosses the finishing line, “I actually think I will be tearing up with about 10 kilometres to go and will definitely cry as I cross the finish line. I feel the same completing a half marathon at the Gold Coast so a Marathon will be something else again and in New York. I actually think leaving Brisbane will be very emotional too as we set off without the kids on an adventure we never thought would happen to us”.
Jen’s 9 and 12 year old sons are excited for the adventure their parents are embarking upon and have an understanding of the cause. “They are aware and would often ask how Scott was getting on”.
Her parents think she is crazy and don’t really understand “why would anyone want to run for over 4 hours”. While her two older sisters are among her greatest supporters.
Preparation is well under way and comprises four sessions a week. Longest sessions are 2.5 hours at the moment, interspersed with less intense and speed sessions. “I am pretty much following the program Paul is putting out each week and making adaptions where I feel I need to.” So far injury free and that’s how we want to stay.
“I love the way I feel after a run, as if I have achieved something. I feel healthy and alive, it’s great”.
As for fund raising, establishing an “Every Day Hero” page specifically for New York and would value every single dollar that is contributed so we may learn more about the horrific thing that is Motor Neurone Disease.
Finally, when thinking New York and the Marathon, Jen used the words “excited” and “scared” and referenced a desire to test herself, to go further than she has gone before physically and mentally. By doing this marathon, she hopes to be part of a group that has made a difference for MND and Me.
To support Jen, go to:
Author: Colin Morley
Author: Colin Morley