I’ve been thinking about the theme of Inspiring Individuals for a series of blog posts for a while now. I actually think the first time I thought it would make a good recurring post was over two years ago when I was writing for a group blog. But, Wednesday marked a very special day for a dear friend of mine who I truly find inspiring, so I thought this week was a good time to get my series started.
So, let’s talk about Melanie. I met Melanie in person for the first time in December 2008. We had a bunch of mutual teacher friends and ended up at the same get together leading up to the holidays. We both knew of each other and were happy to finally meet face-to-face.
We didn’t end up getting really close until fall of 2009. That’s when I went to teach at the same school as Melanie. We were fast friends and soon became good running buddies as well. Melanie trained for her first half-marathon that fall. For the spring training season, I joined her and we haven’t looked back since.
Melanie is passionate about her running. She doesn’t do it for anyone but herself. She doesn’t go out to “beat” anyone and she is a constant source of support to everyone in the running group. One year ago, she set out to run every day in May. Then, she extended it to run every day from Memorial Day to Labor Day. And on Wednesday of this week, a few of us got together to run 3.65 miles with Melanie to celebrate her 365th consecutive day of running.
This is unfathomable to me. I tried a streak once. I didn’t even make it through a whole month. A running streak requires true dedication and love of the sport of running. Melanie has those things, but she is also a true friend and makes a perfect jackass partner in crime.