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CHICAGO IS FOR RUNNERS - JUSTIN GILLESPIE

 
Growing up in the Jordan era, I was all about basketball. If I wasn’t practicing, I was playing at school or in city leagues throughout my childhood. I worked so hard to get better each year but ultimately I realized it wasn’t for me. After not making the high school basketball team 2 years in a row, cross-country and track would have to be where I could my make my mark in sports and feed my competitive spirit. I wasn’t always the fastest but enjoyed the feeling of accomplishing something that I thought I couldn’t do – that still holds true today.

Running took a back seat to life after high school but during my yearly visit to the doctor last year it was revealed to me that my cholesterol was elevated for my age and I instantly remembered seeing my father go through heart issues in years prior. So, it was time for some changes. With heart disease being so prevalent in the African-American community, I refused to become a statistic.

Since joining the 3RUN2 community in August, I’ve never been more motivated. Seeing my crew and other friends run the Chicago Marathon gave me the added boost I needed to take the sport more seriously. And month over month, I feel my mind and body getting stronger. This year I set some serious running goals for the year including 1000km for the year and have my eyes set on finishing the Chicago Marathon in October. With the help of the community, friends and family, I’m confident that I will have plenty of support to complete what will be one of the greatest accomplishments of my life.

The best thing about running is the opportunity to clear your mind and to focus one thing for a given amount of time. Life can throw many different curveballs your way on a daily but running is an outlet to revitalize your willingness to keep moving forward. Running is also much like life in itself. Every day is not the same, you never know how it is going to go, but if you keep pounding the pavement and pump your arms you will push through to the finish.
— Justin Gillespie
 
by 3RUN2