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Leading Ladies' Marathon
& Half Marathon

"Moments That Moved Me"

I wish I could have seen it; had to be the best wreck of the century.  And I was at the bottom of the pile where the view was primarily gnashing teeth and tangled legs.  I’m finding that canine conflict from that perspective is more fun to write about than to experience.  

I was walking my dog in the early dark of last Saturday morning; strolling along, chatting with Kay Jorgensen, enjoying the companionship of man’s best friend and woman’s essential sounding board.  Suddenly I was air-born; totally horizontal for a microsecond, then body slammed and dragged across the asphalt to...

Read the article You Have To Watch As Well As Pray by Elaine Doll-Dunn

The marathon has taken me on a journey I would never have dreamed or imagined. It began with running, and the dedication to that sport was then mandated by the marathon experience. Requiring a focus hinging on habitual movement, continuous monitoring, and persistent mental acuity, the marathon replicates the vicissitudes life. It has been the impetus for keeping in shape, the model for powerful living; a source of courage, control, and satisfaction. Having a tool for sanity that also furthers vanity, makes “the art of the run” a positive force.
We all have our stories; what is yours? How did you get started? Why did you start? What makes you run? If you’re interested in sharing how it has impacted your life or just some significant vignette from your running career, please e-mail me. Remember we’re on this trek together, and supporting each other is what Leading Ladies’ is about. ….
Elaine Doll-Dunn

I started running in 1975.  I was just out of High School and had moved to my grandmother's to go to Jr College.  I was a little chubby and had heard that running would help me lose weight.  Her house was at the top of a hill out in the country, so I ran down the hill and then walked and ran for a mile.  I kept at it everyday until I could run 5 miles (of course it took a while).  I contined to run 5 miles a day everyday to lose weight.  I did lose weight and got hooked on running... Read more
Dianna Sulser

I race because I consider myself a winner. Not the first place blue ribbon kind, but a winner in life. Why? Simply because I embrace and experience life in all its forms and attendant emotions with gratitude, and quite frankly I have little patience (but much sympathy) for those who whine. You know the kind – the kind, who during a race, catch up to you or vice versa and they immediately want to tell you what’s wrong with them, the course, the weather …
Read more
Margaret E. Ruddy

My marathon journey began in February 1980 in the waiting area of a dentist's office in Rapid City, South Dakota. As I inhaled a Marlboro while scanning magazines for anything interesting, I spotted a woman on the cover of Sports Illustrated. The skinny blond Norwegian, Grete Waitz, had won the New York City Marathon in a new world record... Read more
Lorna Squyer

I began to run, just short distances, when I was 24, after foot surgery to correct a congenital deformity that had been getting worse since birth. 4 months after my final operation, I did a 10K, and my feet made it every step of the way. I was so stunned, and thrilled. I finished dead last with a big grin on my face. Since then, I have never really stopped. And I am still really slow! I have been doing longer distances for the past 5 years. I have a few black toenails, but my feet are still holding up. Your Leading Ladies run will be my 20th marathon. It will be a great day!! See you in Spearfish.
Sally Gordon

I started running about 2 years ago now. I had always wanted to do distance running but I have never been fast and I figured if you couldn't run fast why run. I had also always had a very difficult time breathing when running. Then when I started my new job one of my coworkers is an avid runners and her excitement for running made me want to start. So I gave it a try. I started out at a park that is a one mile course. I would run 1/4 of a mile walk a 1/4 then run until I had made two laps. I still had a very difficult time breathing so when I went in for my annual physical I mentioned it to my physician and to my surprise ended up diagnosed with asthma... Read more
Daphne Clark

I don't consider myself athletic. Like all children, I remember running for short bursts when I was young. Then in the mid-70's, I started running with a friend - just to keep fit - no other reason. I guess it was during the first running boom. We would jog slowly around a standard track for a mile or so - sometimes more. Then a few years later, I wanted a goal, so decided to do a 10K. My training, however, was sporadic and remained so for many years. I didn't yet have the "running bug." I had met my future husband by then... Read more
Debbie J-R

I started running late in life… 54 to be exact. Like so many other women, I was VERY over weight and feeling rather bum. I can remember what it felt like to run 1 mile, 3 miles, five miles, so why not 26.2? I ran my first marathon in 2002 in 4hr and 40 minutes. I felt great and I was hooked. This will be my 15th marathon. Each marathon makes me feel stronger no matter what my time is… I just like the challenge.
Mary Munter

I am a member of the 50 States Marathon Club as well as the 50+DC Marathon Group. Spearfish will be my 46th Marathon and 36th State. I began running marathons in 1993 when a college roommate of mine ran New York and LA, and I though "If she can do it ... I can do it." I've been hooked ever since.
I've even been inspired to help train others... Read more
Bekkie Wright, President, Silk City Striders, Manchester, CT

Walking/running keeps me sane... such a great stress release. I developed back pain during my doctoral program... and walking has been my treatment. It has changed my life. I finally decided to try a marathon... Disney 2005 was my first. Leading Ladies will only be my second marathon... but Elaine makes me feel as if I'm an Olympian! When I think about marathons, I always have one special memory... Read more
Deb Ingram

I cannot quite remember exactly when I started running, but it was sometime in the 70’s. I recall that I was working at the School of Public Health at The University of Michigan, as a secretary to the chairman of the Department of Health Planning and Administration. My boss incessantly pestered me on a daily basis to give up smoking and to start running. After years of his “abuse” and prodding, one day I decided to... Read more
Patricia Ball Dlugokinski

I have been a runner for about 15 years (started running seriously - as serious as cross-country can be - when I was 15). I ran my first marathon when I was a sophomore in college and that was it - I was hooked! I ran 1-2 marathons a year (qualifying for Boston each time, and then had a runner friend talk me into finally running Boston - I ran the 101st Boston marathon - got food poisoning the night before... Read more
Nicole Mills

I watched Frank Shorter win the marathon in the 1972 Olympics and was inspired to start running. Being a swimmer, diver, and gymnast in college running was not an event I gave much thought. I got married shortly after I graduated from college and my brother in law in Colorado was running quite a few marathons and trained a few time with Frank. I knew I could run. It wasn't easy at first, but I ran as a means to keep fit with no desire to run more than recreationally. I ran through my pregnancy into my ninth month in 1976 when it was considered tabu and not good for the baby... Read more
Mieka Tomko-Gerard

I have been a runner off/on since 1978, more off than on, with an early goal of one day running a marathon. May 2002 was the 25th Lincoln Marathon. In January of that year, I began my marathon training on a treadmill in the basement. It was an awesome feeling to cross the finish line. I met a lot of great people and received many words of encouragement. During the summer of 2002, I progressed to running outside and took up the offer of a co-worker to join her running group and have been running consistently ever since. Leading Ladies will be my 8th marathon. I am looking forward to the challenge and crossing the finish line.
Bonnie Engel

I heard you speak at the "Women Hold Up Half the Sky" Conference in Cerritos, CA. My friend and I were selling things at the back of the room as a fundraiser for our Team in Training marathon. You were very inspiring - you made me laugh and made me cry. How great is that? I purchased your book at the conference and absolutely love it and would like to order ten copies of your book for my other Team in Training friends and my running partners. They all would like it too, and I'm certain will find it as inspiring as I did.
Anne Marshall


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