Saturday, March 24, 2007

Out of the Darkness & Into the Light

Kick-Off Meeting - January 7, 2007

Followed by Coffee 7:30 a.m at Panera Bread on Breckenridge Lane

Purpose: To establish and market a walking/running program and club for women to enhance their health and self-esteem, implementing theories and practices. Each participant will be encouraged to establish her own specific goal and will work toward it with the support of other women.

Why darkness? Women will meet before dawn to walk or run together because:
• Running out of the darkness into the light has a symbolic quality to it. It is a reminder that no matter how dark the situation in life may seem, it’s important to just find the strength to take the next step. The sun will come up again and life is there waiting to be embraced.
• Darkness hides any insecurity women might have about body image.
• Darkness will force these women to focus only on the next step, to stay fully in the moment and not worry about things they can’t see in the distance.
• Darkness allows free flowing thoughts, whether in their own mind or sharing conversation with others with whom they share the road.
• There is something empowering and rejuvenating to run into dawn, arriving home as the coffee is brewing, knowing that others are just getting out of bed.
• These women will start their day with something positive. It will be their gift to themselves.
• When dawn breaks, these women will be reminded of the blessing of yet another day.

Potential Goals: My goal is to establish this club first in Louisville, Lexington, and Knoxville, and gradually expand the program nationwide. Louisville has a Kentucky Derby Festival “Triple Crown of Running” that attracts thousands of walkers and runners each year. Beginning January 15, the distances will increase gradually, preparing the women for the upcoming events, if they choose to participate. The first event is 3.1 miles and they continue up until the final leg, which is either a half-marathon or full marathon. Some may choose to walk or run the longer events as a relay team.

Additional support: A series of lectures will be held every other Sunday from 2- 3 p.m at St. Matthews Baptist Church on Grandview Avenue in the Hannah Room.
(COST: $10 per lecture)
*JANUARY 7: FREE Intro Meeting (Philosophy,benefits of program and quality of life)
*JANUARY 21: Motivation & the importance of setting clear, specific goals
*FEBRUARY 4: Proper Form, bio-mechanics, injury prevention (wear running clothes)
(Bridgid Mahan with Orthopaedic Motion & Sport Physical Therapy, Inc. will join me)
*FEBRUARY 18: Training With Your Head (less is more & importance of recovery days)
*MARCH 4: Exercise adherence,behavior change,accountability partners/support network
*MARCH 18: Self-concept & Self-esteem
*APRIL 1: Nutrition: Body & Soul
*APRIL 15: Final meeting: "Passing the Torch"... Now what?

Conclusion: A questionnaire will be distributed at the end of April to determine if and how this club and the commitment to exercise enhanced the quality of life (self-esteem, body image, energy levels, personality, ability to handle stress, and other factors) for the women involved.