2014 is upon us and we are currently all under fire from fitness marketers of all kinds. Berated by companies encouraging us to make a personal resolution and to make sure that their product is part of the New Year’s change. You will be asked to use their gym or perhaps try their diet or anything to turn around your slovenly lifestyle. Even our friends and coworkers will ask us what type goals we have for the New Year. In the end, it all amounts to a lot of noise, some short-term money spent and come Mid-February, a grip of guilt. A forgotten promise briefly made to our selves.
Admittedly, as a running event company we are certainly not above this fray. Of course we want you to run our races, but we also want more for you. In 2014 and in the foreseeable future, we’re looking to make a difference beyond our events, beyond our runners, and into our communities. We want to go beyond the resolutions and towards a revolution.
This will require us to walk the tight rope of pushing our principles and preaching lifestyle choices. While we will try to lean towards the former…we do believe there are right and wrong ways to walk this earth. Lastly, we promise to continue to keep the vibe of our events and our runner communications light and fun. You will still smile.
Ok, so here we go.
We all want to work out more, eat healthier, spend more time with our families and frankly just feel better. But the answer is not in a single goal or a 10-day weight loss super diet. You can only drink so many lemon juice and cayenne pepper concoctions before you go back to your old ways. Beyond those specific result-oriented goals there must lay a deeper motivation to change. In our view those lifestyle improvement goals and much, much more are all connected. And we have finally found our motivation, our fire to connect those dots.
Our Story & The Movement
It all started with the creation of the San Jose 408k. Our goal was to simply create a quality, big feeling event in a locale that we cared about. In San Jose we saw an opportunity to unite and celebrate a diverse community. At the time there was no scheme and there was no agenda; the only fire was lets stay in business. We were too busy keeping our head above water and locating mariachi bands. We were creating a course with the potential to hold thousands, trying to recruit hundreds of volunteers and hoping you would all sign up. At the time, the only purpose was just to create a great event, make some money for a righteous cause and that was enough for the first few years. Amazingly, we did it. To date the Pat Tillman Foundation has raised over $25,000, the event has a solid reputation for fun and organization and we’ve even turned it into a Bay Area wide series with similar goals in the 415 and 510 communities. At this point we could hit cruise control and just maintain business as usual. But that’s not us. We need more, we want to change lives, we want to support more people, raise more money for incredible causes and more than anything we are now motivated to support an important movement within each of our local communities.
A movement takes time and we are in it for the long run. (Ed. note: pun intended.) You see we have seen the potential power of our simple area code running events, the passion that our participants have for their hometowns, and the love for their local way of life. We also realize that we’re just a simple series running races; but we also believe events can be a catalyst for a wild fire of change. It is because of these experiences that it is now our mission to fully support every local community in which we work and in every possible way.
We recently trademarked the tagline Run Local®. Initially it was intended to be a cute little play on words, but now it has come to mean much more. We truly believe in living as local as possible and the phrase “Run Local” will be our reminder.
On an economic level buying local keeps more money in your immediate community and creates a more efficient economy. On an environmental level it minimizes our petroleum footprint on the world as we attempt to find goods closer to home. It’s super simple, when you buy goods made closer to home they require less energy to get to you. On a personal health level, eating local not only continues to reduce our energy conservation efforts but it also improves the health of our bodies. Foods from our farmer’s markets are typically certified organic, grown within only a few hours distance and the cash infusion also supports the farmers in your region.
There is a connection between training for a race, supporting area businesses, and eating healthier. That connection is location. Through giving local, buying local, eating local and running local we can change the world…at least the one around us everyday.
Ok, yes, we just embarked on the preachy. In fact it just got all Sunday preachy in here. And we know not all things can be purchased at the farmers market, but we can all try and we can all certainly be more aware.
We will partner with as many local vendors including local race directors, other events, local product provisions, and definitely as many local charities as possible. We will not always be able to find a comparable vendor in every area code and with every item, but we promise to do our best and to keep it as local as possible.
Here is tough part. We also encourage our runners and sponsors to do the same. Our event can make a small difference abiding by the principles of regional awareness, but we can move mountains when our participants and supporters start living local as well.
It’s not political, it’s neither left nor right…in our eyes it is just correct.
Lets move beyond the two-month change, the quick fix and the uninspired goals. Lets move beyond the resolution and towards the revolution. Run Local®.
Founder of the Represent Running & Soul Focus Sports
Follow our journey on this blog & at www.representrunning.com
Nextspace.us provides amazing office space, Shine-On screen printing does the job right, VTA & Amtrak deliver the people, San Franola feeds the people, KEZR Mix 106.5 spreads the word,La Raza 9.33 spreads the word in Spanish, Metro Newspapers spreads the written word. Many more coming on everyday and we welcome any partner looking to make a change in their community.