The Running Equation

Why do I run? T’aint no mystery / Wanna have a good medical history / Doctor told me runnin’ is really great / Helps them blood cells circulate / Great for the lungs, Great for the ticker / Ain’t nothin’ getcha in better shape quicker / Feels so healthy, feels so sweet / Pumpin’ my arms and flappin’ my feet / Moldin’ my muscles, firmin’ my form / Pantin’ like a pack mule, sweatin’ up a storm / Keeps me youthful, keeps me loose / tightens my tummy, and shrinks my caboose / Beats bein’ sluggish, Beats bein’ lazy / Why do I run? Maybe I’m crazy!

Ed Cunningham

Calculate This

Buy the right shoes, add a determined attitude, subtract the obstacles and you create an equation for results. Studies have linked 150 minutes of exercise a week to reducing the incidence of life threatening disease and extending the life of cancer survivors up to 5.3 years.

What Running can ADD to your life

  • Leaner Body Mass
  • Stress Management
  • Stronger Muscles
  • Increased Bone Density
  • Sharper Mind
  • Reduced chance of cancer diagnosis and relapse
Kimberly Price running Coast to Coast for Cancer
Kimberly Price, Coast To Coast For Cancer 2013

Running Multiplies Purpose

Kimberly Price, a stage IV Non-Hodgkin’s cancer survivor, juggled raising four kids, business and domestic demands, to train for her first marathon in 2013, at age 38. Kimberly, along with 160 other cancer survivors and advocates, ran a string of marathons connecting the east and west coast, to raise money and awareness for cancer prevention and programs. Kimberly hoped her participation would inspire her children to “realize the importance of helping uplift those around them, to live bigger better lives.”

While training, Kimberly noticed an increase in energy and strength, which carried into her other daily activities of life. On stressful days, a good run brought relief.

“My participation in Above and Beyond Cancer’s Coast To Coast For Cancer Run 2014 was a life changing event. I never imagined the journey I was about to embark on, would prove to be so much deeper, and parallel my cancer journey so closely.

The beginning was much like the start of my cancer diagnosis. A rush of emotion, fear of the unknown and the overwhelming question of whether or not I would finish. The rally of friends and family surrounding this crazy venture felt wildly familiar.

Next came the training phase. Armed with a plan I set out on each run putting one foot in front of the other ready to tackle whatever obstacle decided to present itself that day. Some days were a lot tougher than others, and there were many times I was ready to throw in the towel, but something in me kept pushing on despite the pain.

The pivotal point in the journey was when it became very evident that this wasn’t just a race to finish, but a metaphor for what not only I had been through, but for what others are also experiencing everyday. This was a piece of something larger, a piece that would unite and elevate the lives of many well beyond the finish line.”

How to subtract the obstacles

Research has proven running may strengthen your joints, and reduce symptoms of arthritis. Above + Beyond Cancer and other health professionals at the YMCA can assist you with running form, body muscle imbalances, that can promote a safe run routine, and ease joint pain.

Join Above + Beyond Cancer’s Running team. We welcome all speeds and abilities and provide social support to hold you accountable and motivated. Our team can help you set goals to participate in your first 5k, marathon, or anything in between!  Contact me at to add running to your life.

Mary Van Heukelom
Program Director

Mary Van Heukelom is a Certified Cancer Exercise Trainer who trains, educates and coaches cancer survivors to reduce the chance of relapse, through holistic personal wellness programs addressing all aspects of healthy living.

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