Running for Your Life

Guest Writer:  Kelly Pheulpin, reflects on her vocation of inspiring others, to run for their health.  This is the second of  a two-part article

Kelly writes: ‘I’m a proud mom of two girls, who is into fitness and helping others around me achieve their goals of living a healthier lifestyle.  I’m a mom of a child with Type 1 diabetes and I love to educate others on healthy living and small changes to make their diabetes more manageable’.

Fellow FlowersA community of runners supporting others through inspiring stories of why we run. Membership into the group is free but it is preferred that a fellow flower invite you to join with the gift of a flower that represents your story. https://fellowflowers.com

Kelly: ‘I have been running and working out since 2011, I have met so many amazing men and women through my journey to get healthy. In 2017 I was asked to teach a class to help members of North shore medical center’s gastric bypass. Forward to 2018 I have been working with this dedicated group for almost a year. Their commitment to a healthy lifestyle is inspirational especially since all of them thought I was crazy upon meeting them, however they all dedicated themselves to the program.

Kim one of the members in the class was the most skeptical of the bunch, when I told her she would someday run a ½ marathon she laughed and said not me; all I want is to pass my physical fitness test at work. Slowly she started working towards small goals. She walked the 2017 reindeer run in Beverly then walk/ran the frosty four-miles on New Year’s day, then on and on.

When we laced up our sneakers to take on Zooma’s ½ marathon, she was almost a year to the day I met her and she was crushing goals, we had a fun exciting race on the cape enjoying the views and each other, once she completed her first ½ marathon days later she would be facing her final goal… The fitness test.

Tuesday came, and I was fortunate enough to be present when Kim took her test, I knew she was more than ready. To pass she needed to run 1.5 miles in under 18 minutes complete at least 12 push-ups in under a minute, complete 30 sit-ups in under a minute, and be able to reach more than 23 inches on the sit and reach. Not only did Kim nail her goal she was encouraging others and coaching them through passing their tests as well. Coach and student had come full circle right before my eyes.

Kelly (left), Kim (right) concluding their race.

 

I had been waiting for this day for so long, I could barely contain my excitement for her as she passed the test and I handed her a flower, she had earned her entrance into the fellow flowers, I picked purple for her.

Purple represents: “SELF; The odds are against me. I’m too slow. too old. Self-doubt. No time. No training partner. The kids need me. Its dark out. It’s too early. I’m Tired. I have to work. It hurts. I’m scared they will laugh. Doctor says maybe I shouldn’t. Can’t find a sitter. Life is too Busy. I look in the mirror and don’t see a runner. What if I fail? NO MORE EXCUSES……. I’m doing it anyway!”

Even when everything was going wrong and Kim thought about giving up she didn’t, and she surpassed goals she never thought she could achieve. I couldn’t think of a more fitting flower than purple for her. She is continuing to move forward with her health journey and helping others by leading through example to pay forward what was given to her. I can’t wait to see what she tackles next!’

 

Kelly Gets Her Flower

Guest Writer:  A few years ago I invited my friend, Kelly Pheulpin, to write a guest blog on her vocation of inspiring others, to run for their health.  This new two-part article, is another chapter in Kelly’s ongoing journey of empowering herself and others.

As an introduction, Kelly writes: ‘I’m a proud mom of two girls, who is into fitness and helping others around me achieve their goals of living a healthier lifestyle.  I’m a mom of a child with Type 1 diabetes and I love to educate others on healthy living and small changes to make their diabetes more manageable’.

Kelly inspires me.  I hope her unfolding story will encourage you too.  I invite you to read and get out and exercise.

                                         Kelly Gets Her Flower

Fellow FlowersA community of runners supporting others through inspiring stories of why we run. Membership into the group is free but it is preferred that a fellow flower invite you to join, with the gift of a flower that represents your story. https://fellowflowers.com 

‘Every runner has a story, some are moving, powerful, or remarkable; others are just everyday run of the mill but still important in their own right. I had been following the Fellow flowers community online for some time in awe of all the ladies and their stories. While I was down at ZOOMA Cape Cod  http://zoomarun.com/race/cape-cod, I was able to talk with one of the founders of ‘Fellow Flowers’,  Mel Charbonneau.

She is a strong, positive woman who wants to spread her strength to others. While helping her set up for Zooma and chatting about running and how I got involved with Zooma through another Skirt Sister http://www.skirtsports.com, she asked:  “Are you Kelly”? I said yes, how did you know? She explained she had been asked to give me a flower and welcome me to the community of Fellow Flowers.

I was shocked! My running story isn’t unique or special are you sure you mean me?!? She then gifted me a light pink flower with the saying : “GRADTITUDE to endure against the odds, to thank my body and myself, to admire and love, to honor a hero to be a hero because I know this is so much bigger than me” . She explained that every flower has a special saying; it tells the runner’s story without words. When runners see them on the course, they know if they need help or a person to confide in, we will be there for them.

I stood there with tears in my eyes again asking,  ‘me, really’? She said yes, because you are the silent runner who gathers and encourages runners with your enthusiasm for the sport, as well as your knowledge to help them commit and change their lifestyles, without ever thinking you have done a thing. She went on to tell me about how she heard of my work with the North Shore Medical Center’s gastric bypass class and excited she was to be able to meet them and cheer them in for their first ½ marathon finish.

Race day came, and I joyfully put my pink flower on my visor and got ready to run. During the ½ marathon I saw a rainbow of flowers on all types of women and felt an instant connection to them without ever saying a word. Zooma’s race while the distance was not new to me was a unique experience, I still can’t get my mind around.

left to right: Kim, Mark, Kelly, Christine, Jennifer

Between the positive energy, motivational runners, the few men who ran to celebrate with their female running partner,s and seeing my group of runners who have never run a ½ marathon, cross the finish line, knowing they had trained hard for this day and they had succeeded. True to her word Mel was at the finish line cheering my group in louder than anyone else. She congratulated all of them and asked if they would run another, they all said they would. I can’t wait to give out my first flower to a fellow runner.’ ~ Kelly

Note:  If you want to learn more about how you can improve your health and wellness, contact Kelly at kpheulpin@aol.com