My daughters participated in the Girls On The Run 5k at St. Joseph's College in Standish over the weekend. They had been training for the celebratory road race for a few months, leading up to the big race on Sunday. This was my 11 year old's third year in the program, and my 9 year old's second year. I was my younger daughter's running buddy, and my fiance ran with my older daughter. Although the race isn't timed (the focus is more on running strong and finishing), we planned on timing it ourselves, and we set goals for each of them - my 11 year old set out to finish in under 30 minutes, and my 9 year old wanted to finish in under 40.

AJ Dukette

 

The weather was perfect for the run! Although it was misting very lightly, the temperature was a comfortable 59 degrees. Both girls ran strong through the entire race, and in the end the both crushed their goals. My 11 year old is now officially faster than me - at 28:17, her time was better than the fastest I've ever run a 5k. And my 9 year old impressed all of us with her time of 32:40, over 7 minutes faster than her goal!

AJ Dukette

Girls On The Run teaches girls about empowerment - that they can do anything if they set their minds to it. It teaches them how rewarding it is to work hard towards a goal, and the great feeling that comes with accomplishing it. It also gives them a sense of camaraderie, and teaches them about helping the community. I would recommend the program to anyone with young daughters.

I am so incredibly proud of both of them, and incredibly grateful to the coaches, volunteers, and organizers of the program. Watching them participate, I learned that my daughters can thrive in a challenging situation, and become stronger because of it. It also pushes ME to continue to be physically active, so that I can keep up with them!