How to Inspire Others

A few weeks ago I wrote a post announcing that I had been chosen as a Greatist Ambassador.  According to Greatist, their ambassadors are people “who make healthier choices and inspire others to do the same”.

I have to admit, I was a bit surprised when I got the e-mail telling me I had been chosen – me, inspire others??!  I’m just a girl who decided to go for a run (and then another, and another…) and write about it!  There was suddenly a lot of pressure…how can I inspire others??

And then I looked at the people closest to me…

When I was signing up for a half marathon at Disneyland I asked my family to come for the trip since we had never been there.  My mom and sister not only agree to come to California, but they surprised me by telling me they decided to run the 5k while we were there!

Almost a year after I ran my first race my mom, sister and I crossed the finish line of their first race together.  My sister had such a good time she’s working towards running a half marathon with me in January!

And just this past weekend my dad (bad knees and all!) showed up with brand new running sneakers and announced he was planning on joining us for the next one – he even went on his first run already!

I thought about one of my best friends, Alex, who I’ve known since 1st grade.  I’ve always thought of Alex as my “running friend”, she always seemed to be out running and I never understood, I thought she was crazy!  The one thing she hadn’t done was run a full marathon.

After I went from “running hater” to marathoner in less than 8 months she decided to train for her own 26.2 miles and sent me an e-mail (that I’ll keep forever!) that said this:

I wanted to say how proud I am of you for going out and accomplishing your goals.  You have given me courage to go out and train for this run and I am thankful to you for it.

I loved being able to talk with her about marathon training and share tips and information from having gone through it.  I even suggested some yoga poses when she was dealing with hamstring issues and was shocked when she told me they worked so well she started going to yoga once a week!

Alex was supposed to run the New York City Marathon this year, which of course wasn’t to be.  She did however find and run a full marathon in Pennsylvania the next weekend.  I was honored and touched when I was one of her first calls after she finished, I was so proud of her and excited to have shared the experience!

Alex & I at the 2012 13.1 NYC!

I thought of the day that a former co-worker called me out of the blue to tell me she just got back from a run around Central Park because she saw my Facebook update that I had just finished a run and it reminded her that she really should get out there!  She actually thanked me!

I think I figured out how to inspire others…

Keep doing what I’m doing.  Keep working towards being the person that I want to be, making the healthy choices I’m making and sharing them with others.  Apparently it’s contagious!

10 thoughts on “How to Inspire Others

  1. Dear Dani…
    I am so very proud of you … you life was touched by a young women who set u on this journey of self- discovery, and u in turn have touched the lives of others…. including your dad ( bad knees and all!). In fact I am off for my second run this morning. Just imagine what a wonderful world this

    • Just Imagine what a better world this would be if we all followed the wisdom of
      Mahatma Gandhi….. Your spirit is truly contagious… and I am glad I caught the “bug”. Keep on doing what u love, and being yourself…. For you truly are a “Greatist Ambassador” !
      Love…. Dad

    • Thank you so much! Now that you mention it maybe ill write a post about people that inspire me…it’s amazing where inspiration can come from and how unexpected it can be! Who knew when I met Kerry it would lead to so many life changes!

    • I totally agree! I know before I started running I always thought, “I can’t run a marathon…I’m not a runner”, but reading about other people who “weren’t runners” who did it made me more confident to start trying!

  2. This is actually for your dad…and you. Just I can totally relate to this. My dad, about a year ago, swore he was incapable of running more than 1.5 miles straight (and that was pushing it). He went on one of my training runs with me and learned that he could do 4 miles that day. In October, my dad just turned 60. In November, when I crossed the finish line of the Wine and Dine, my dad was right next to me. He ran the whole thing!

    It’s awesome that you have inspired your dad and that your dad has taken this step. For you dad, as cliche as this may sound, YOU CAN DO IT!!!!! And congrats to you for all you inspire 🙂

      • Thanks and please do! I’m sure he will do awesome! Running with my dad was incredible. It’s rare when the child gets to be so proud of a parent, but I was so overwhelming proud of my dad when he crossed that finish line, it was amazing. I know you’ll feel the same when you see your dad cross too! (btw, that’s me and my dad with his medal in my profile pick 🙂 )

  3. That is so awesome that you have touched so many people. It’s true – you may not know you are inspiring someone but just by getting out there and trying things, you can inspire the people around you. Good for you!

    • Thanks Emily, it’s nice to know that there is that sort of ripple effect…I’m doing something good for myself and without even trying it may encourage others to do the same! : )

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