SoleMate Spotlight - 2018 TCS New York City Marathon: Lila

Today we're shining a spotlight on Lila, a SoleMate who's running in the TCS New York City Marathon while also raising funds for GOTR programming!  Lila, we are so excited to see you at the Marathon and we are grateful for your support to help us reach more girls!

image1 (6).jpeg

What does the Girls on the Run mission mean to you?

I see Girls on The Run as an incredible tool to empower young girls through sport. I think GOTR can play a truly meaningful role in the lives of young girls by teaching them confidence in their bodies, minds and spirits.

Why did you decide to be a SoleMate for the NYC Marathon and fundraise for Girls on the Run?

I really wanted to run the NYC marathon this year and when I didn't get in through the lottery, I looked through the list of participating charities. I've been looking forward to my daughter joining Girls on The Run in our small town and when I saw GOTR NYC as an option, it stood out to me. I got excited to help make this program more readily available to girls who might not otherwise be able to afford it. Endurance sports have given me confidence as an adult that I wish I had more of as a young girl. I know GOTR can give girls the gift of confidence and leadership skills. We need our young generation of girls to be powerful, have a voice and learn these skills from a young age!

Tell us a little bit about your running history! Why do you run?

My first experience running was a timed mile for basketball in high school and I hated it! I continued to run out of necessity. The first time I remember enjoying running was with friends on my Crew Team in college. We bonded over a long run as it got dark on a cool fall day in Maine. I've been hooked on endurance sport since college. I love the way it makes me feel strong, fit and I love the people it has introduced me to.

Favorite place to run? Or Favorite pump-up running song?

I love running on the familiar trails near my house. In the woods on snowmobile trails. I also really enjoy running along the river here on our local rail trail.

Is this your first marathon? If no, how many have you run?

This will be my first marathon.

If people could give you energy awards while you were running the marathon which would you want for an energy boost?

Hmm, maybe Dead bug??

What do you do besides running to keep yourself healthy, confident, and joyful?

I spend time outside hiking, biking and swimming. I am a triathlete and have competed in multiple sprint, Olympic and half distance triathlons over the past 5 years. I spend time with my young children staying active and involved in our community.

Who do you look up to?

I look up to many of my amazing mother friends who juggle raising young children, working and athletic pursuits, volunteering in their communities, and being good friends!

Who has impacted your life the most and encouraged you to be your beautiful, healthy, and courageous self?

Tough one! My elementary school science teacher gave me the confidence to pursue my dream of becoming a veterinarian. He convinced my 12 year old self that I was smart enough and good enough. As far as athletic role models, I look up to many professional athletes who have families and give back to their communities.

Any fundraising tips for fellow SoleMates?

Send a personal letter with your story to friends and family. Tell them specifically why GOTR is important in our current society. Write thank you letters to each person who donates.  

What words of encouragement would you share with a girl starting with Girls on the Run?

Believe in yourself. You can do more than you imagine. It's O.K. to be scared. Doing things you are scared of makes you a stronger, more confident person. Don't compare your athletic ability to others. Do your best and encourage others to do their best. Have fun and feel powerful!

What advice would you give yourself at 10 years old?

Love yourself for who you are! Don't compare your body or athletic abilities to others.  

Thank you for all your support of Girls on the Run, Lila! If you want to donate to Lila's fundraising efforts, click here.