Women Show What It Means to Run Like a Girl

By Jim Siegel
The Columbus Dispatch, Ohio

WWR Article Summary (tl;dr) The ManternOhio “Run Like a Girl” race is in its fourth year, raising thousands of dollars for Go Red for Women, the American Heart Association’s effort to fight strokes and heart attacks in women.

The Columbus Dispatch, Ohio

About 2,200 women came Downtown to Genoa Park on a picture-perfect Saturday morning to answer the question, ‘What does it mean to run like a girl?’

“To be the best you can be, and remind yourself of how strong you are,” said Kathy Hatch, 45, of Pickerington, an avid runner who still walked Saturday’s race despite a stress fracture in her pelvis.

“Be strong and powerful,” said Eugenia Jardy, 40, of Westerville, who began running races just this year.

“Just run with your heart and not be pressured by others to do anything they want you to do. Be a badass,” said Alyson Tucker of Upper Arlington, who crossed the line first in the 5K race.

“It means to get that inner strength and meet your own goals,” said Pat Wilbur of Urbana.

The ManternOhio Run Like a Girl race is in its fourth year, raising thousands of dollars for Go Red for Women, the American Heart Association’s effort to fight strokes and heart attacks in women.

Wilbur’s mother died of heart disease four years ago, which is why she and her daughter, Polly Trenor, were running the race for the second time.

“I did it last year in honor of her and I’m doing it again, although this year I’m running instead of walking,” Wilbur said with a big smile.

Jeff Sheard, whose UltraFit-USA puts on a number of fitness events in the area, said he started this race because he felt an event was missing for women, particularly those who are older and possibly retired who might be intimidated by the idea of joining a road race.

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“So we backed it down a notch and created an event for women only to encourage women who might normally not come out,” he said.

Amy Hartwell, 43, of Lewis Center, said she runs several races in the fall to keep herself moving and is part of a local chapter of Moms RUN This Town.

“It inspires me to continue to run for my health and I hope to inspire other women if they are standing on the sidelines that maybe it looks fun and they want to get involved.”

Upon finishing the races, which ranged from 5K to 10 miles, many women had their names announced at the finish line, and were then treated to wine served by tuxedo-clad men.

Lisa Hayes, of Newark, wore an “I hate running” shirt to the race for a reason.

“I do. I actually hate it,” she said. “There’s nothing fun about it.”

But she was there with three friends who do a weightlifting class together, after they decided to do a 30-day challenge ending with a 5K.

Asked why she hates running, Hayes noted that Wednesday at the gym was leg night, with plenty of squats. “My quads are killing me today.”

Still, her friend, Lyndsi Martin of Newark, said the race was liberating. “We’re all different sizes, all different ages.”

“Everybody’s got a different story,” Hayes added. “I passed tons of people with cancer shirts on. That’s major overcoming.”

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