On Why I Began Training for The San Francisco Marathon

In LA, there are over 35,000 homeless youth enrolled in school. Imagine going to school without a shower because you don’t have one; waking in an unfamiliar place, a car, on the street, in a shelter or, if you’re lucky, in one of an endless trail of foster homes. Imagine no school at all.

Imagine none of it’s your fault.

How do you keep going? I don’t know, but that’s the only way to change it. How do you find courage to show up & do your best with the odds so stacked against you & without the foundation of stability, a home? I don’t know the answer to that either, but I know it must come from the heart.

This comes from my heart.

School on Wheels serves the homeless youth of Los Angeles, providing them with supplies, uniforms, & tutors, very basic things to help them on their path, with things most of us take for granted. Until recently, I don’t know that I’d ever truly considered what it must be like to grow up without a place to go. Just after dawn on Saturday, April 16th, I was running when I saw the children on the boardwalk in Venice, children who’d been out there all night. Once I saw them, I considered them & once I considered them, I couldn’t let them go. I realized I had to try to help.

I had to at least try.

SF Marathon is full of upward climbs in an unfamiliar place, & when I thought to run it, I couldn’t imagine why on earth I would. 26.2 miles is a long way to go on foot. It hurts & the only way to finish is to keep going. In 2010, I ran the LA Marathon because I needed to prove to myself that I could. Until Saturday, I didn’t think I’d do another one. Without something to prove to propel me, I realized I needed something stronger, something both outside of & greater than myself.

I believe in these kids. I believe we can help them. The marathon I’ll do alone, but for the rest I need your help. Please give what you can, share this & ask others to join us.

You’re welcome to run with me if you’d like; meet me in San Francisco July 29th & we’ll do that together, too.