Each of the last seven years, I have run the Boston Marathon for the Boston Bulldogs Running Club and am honored to be once more running for this incredible community of people, this time as one of their charity runners. I’ve been with the Bulldogs from the first run of the initial Chestnut Hill Chapter of the club and have embarked on hundreds of runs with fellow Bulldogs since those early days in 2015. To say the Bulldogs have given me so much throughout the years is an understatement. For those not familiar, we are a coed nonprofit running club with a mission to provide an anonymous and safe community of support for all those adversely affected by addiction. This includes those in recovery, their families and friends, the clinical community, and the community at large.
I’ve seen the suffering of far too many people who are close to me and who have been impacted by addiction, but I’ve also seen the tremendous power of the Bulldogs in helping individuals receive the support they need to get back on their feet. Through compassion and community, the Bulldogs have changed countless lives for the better, and my main hope is that we as a club can continue to reach and support more people. Having two friends pass away from their struggles with addiction in the past two years was heart wrenching, and having shared many runs and conversations with them both, I know how influential running was in their wellness journeys, and the self empowerment, confidence, accountability, and joy it gave them. I’ve dealt with my fair share of struggles in this beautiful gift we call life and am still in the process of dealing with many today, and the running community, especially the Bulldogs, has always been there for me and supported me whether they realize it or not. Sharing strides and miles with others can be a deeply intimate and humanizing experience, and one in which we can really learn how to open ourselves to the support of people around us.
Part of my commitment to the club is to raise $5,000 in support of club programs to help those in recovery and all those adversely impacted by addiction. If anyone feels inclined to donate, your contributions will be greatly appreciated, and even a little can go a long way. Also, if you or anyone you know is struggling with addiction, please don’t hesitate to reach out or join one of the club’s runs and introduce others to do the same. Most importantly, know you are never alone in your struggles and that countless people care and will be there for you if you let them.
The Boston Marathon is special to me for many reasons, one of which is having the opportunity to give back to the Bulldogs. My first time racing Boston in 2016 was one of the most memorable experiences of my life, and I have Jack Fultz, Mike Ferullo, and the Boston Bulldogs Running Club to thank for that. If you don’t know Jack, he is the winner of the 1976 Boston Marathon, but much more than that, he is an incredible human being who gives back so much to the running community. Both he, Mike, and the Bulldogs gave me, an 18 year old kid with a dream, the chance to run the most prestigious marathon in the world, and for that, I am forever grateful. After running those 26.2 miles from Hopkinton to Boston, I immediately fell in love. I told myself that every Patriot’s Day in April would be reserved on my calendar so I could return to those streets. The crowds, the camaraderie, and the spirit of hope this race brings to the city are unparalleled and something I hope everyone can experience, whether running or spectating.
Thanks so much for taking the time to visit my marathon page and read my story. I appreciate you. Whether an addict or an ally, it is through connection that we can all heal collectively and help battle both addiction and the stigma associated with it. Please consider helping me in my commitment to raise $5,000 for the club, and please continue reaching out to those you love because we are all deserving of care and compassion.