We Got A Story To Tell

CHICAGO IS FOR RUNNERS - KAHEE YU

When I missed my time goal by 68 minutes at the 2015 Chicago Marathon, I threw myself a pity party to go along with the distressing embarrassment. I kicked, screamed, cried and stayed in bed for 2 days as if my world had just ended. Quite dramatic, I know, but I could not stop thinking about what had gone wrong. The 18 weeks of 5:30am long runs on the lakefront, the tempo runs in the humidity, and all that time put in getting those miles up were all wasted. Discouraged and frustrated, I left my running shoes to collect dust; then my mom asked to go on a run with her and dad. She had recently encouraged my dad to give running a try, just as she did with me 3 years ago. On that brisk November morning, running with my parents rooted me back to why I ran.

We immigrated to Albany Park in the 80s and both my parents worked very long hours on minimal sleep to provide a clean home and home-cooked dinners every day for my grandparents, aunts, my brother, and me. When I asked my mom what she did on her free time back then, she basically laughed in my face explaining there was no such thing for her. The immigrant hustle was real and it was not until in their mid 50s that they were able to purchase their first pair of real running shoes and make their health a priority.

And to think I deserved certain results because I had invested 18 weeks for a race was simply delusional. It was through my parents I learned running was a privilege and for a period after the Chicago Marathon I had lost focus. I am extremely lucky to have the time, health, and shoes to do something I enjoy because there are so many others that do not have the opportunities. With the support of my family, friends, and 3RUN2 I re-laced up my shoes with the constant reminder of my beginnings. I cannot control the results of each run or race, but I will take every opportunity to put one foot in front of the other because it is a privilege to run.
— Kahee Yu