“The grand essentials to happiness in this life are something to do, something to love and something to hope for.” — Joseph Addison.

The act of running fulfills all the above….

Standing in anticipation for the start of the OUC half-marathon today, I looked around at the many runners and they all beamed with hope.  Silent whispers bubbled over top their heads as if the picture had been edited with words…I hope to finish, I hope I break my PR, I hope my foot does not ache, I hope I had enough for breakfast, I hope I do not have to pee, I hope ….. it seemed symbolic for the time of year when PEACE, LOVE AND HOPE surround us for the holidays.

Running feels essential to happiness in life because it gives us something to do….training requires dedication and commitment….it is more than just something to do – it challenges us – it makes us squeeze more time into our busy days – it makes us MORE.

Running is something we love….we HAVE to love it, RIGHT?  Why else would we tie our shoelaces at 5am and sneak past our partners and children asleep in warm beds. Why else would we forgo a friday night party oozing with wine and beer to wake up at dark-thirty to race? Why else would we embrace pain and push harder?

And lastly, running gives us beautiful stunning hope….I felt very honored to be a part of the hope at the race today.

It was a great race…

Happy Trails,


Nikki Blanton