Kathleen Dougherty


November 2015

I started running about 7 years ago, at age 48, after a surgical procedure really took it’s toll on me mentally and physically.  I started out running/walking, but soon began experiencing the “runners high”, and decided that although it would take work, I wanted to just run, and run longer distances.  So the journey began.

I ran 5 to 6 days a week, and soon decided to enter my first half marathon.  The thrill of crossing that finish line was like nothing I ever experienced.  The sense of accomplishment was just amazing.  I entered many races after that, but I just couldn’t get the idea of running a marathon out of head.  So, in May of this year, I entered the Philadelphia Marathon!  I gradually increased my distances, tweaked my already healthy diet, and joined Vive’s Running Club to get the weight training and additional advice such as a training schedule.

Attending the weekly sessions showed me that I really needed extra strength training to pull this off, so I started training once a week with Tom Shaver.  The Cycling classes were my cross training that I am convinced also helped my running ability in both endurance and strengthening the quads.  And yesterday, all of my hard work paid off.

The entire experience was like none other!  The first 22 miles were fine, but the last 4 were really a test of endurance and strength!  Without all of the preparing I did for 6 months, I could have never pulled it off!  And I ran the entire time!  A lot of people walked in places.  I was kind of surprised at how many ended up walking the last 2 miles!  Not me!  I ran across that finish line so proudly, as my husband and children cheered me on!  And then I cried my eyes out! (Happy tears!). I enjoyed the entire experience, from “high-fiving” the children along the way, to thanking the spectators for cheering for a complete stranger. 

Running has changed my life.  And Vive has helped me take my running to another level.  Thank you for letting me share my story.  I hope it encourages others, especially people around my age, to not settle. Get a health goal in mind, and never, ever give up the fight!