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1) What does StacheStrong mean to you and how do you #LiveStacheStrong?
For me, the term StacheStrong has become synonymous with family & support. Whether its the simple comfort you need at the end of a long day, or the army at your side when you’re heading into the darkest of battles. I often find myself reaching for one of my StacheStrong shirts when I’m looking for my shield, an impenetrable force field that makes me feel invisible to the rest of the world. StacheStrong can be your iron armor when you need it, or the soft hug when you need it even more.
I live StacheStrong by going out and living my life to the absolute fullest, striving to be the best person I can be on a daily basis. On only the rarest of occasions will you find me sitting inside in front of a screen – as I like to get out in the world not only to enjoy myself but the company of those around me. I am always there for my friends and family whenever they need me – whether it be a birthday or celebration, a time of mourning or a beer in the corner of a pub when someone needs a helpful perspective. I’ve always kept those around me very close, because I believe you don’t necessarily need to be from the same blood to be considered true family. In my mind, StacheStrong means family, so I live StacheStrong by living for my family.
2) Why are you personally running?
I am personally running for a number of reasons. First off because running has always been a major part of my life, and has had an extremely large impact in shaping the man I have become today. I was always known throughout my hometown as the kid who was as fast as the wind, often spotted jogging around town miles from where my parents lived. It was my desire to continue running at the collegiate level that led me to Fordham – where I met my wife and the strongest members of my own support system. I was often forced to miss the weekend parties or the lazy days lounging around campus in the sun, but I would never second guess my decision for the mental grit, memories, glory and discipline I learned by logging miles around the Bronx, on tracks across the country, and in my own head.
While track is certainly a team sport, the hardest part of running is the internal struggle that goes in your mind. The question of ‘why am I doing this,” “why does this hurt so much” and “can I really go on” often quite literally ‘run’ through your brain. It is one’s ability to run through these internal obstacles that makes them a stronger person. Frankly, I miss this struggle in my life – I miss the nervousness before a race where I can’t even stomach a single bite. I miss the moments where I find a second or third wind and begin to actually pick up my pace when there’s nothing left for my body to give. I am running to get this missing piece back in my life. To prove that I am still strong – especially since its taken on a much more important meaning.
I am also running, because one of my friends is in need. I use the term friend loosely because Colin has become so much more than a friend to me. From the random nights out on the town that we don’t remember – to traveling to the other side of the world on a trip we’ll never forget, we’ve formed a bond strong enough that makes me feel as though Colin is part of my family. When anyone in my family needs help, I’m there to do whatever it takes.