Though Anne Giovanoni, 43, lives in Somerville, MA, she’s traveled to New York City to complete 92 New York Road Runners races since 2007. She’s since joined the organization as an NYRR Philanthropic Member. Here’s why she’s giving back in a big way.
I run because setting and working toward personal goals motivates me. I was not athletic through school and college, and I ran my first marathon just to see if I could do it.
I started running when I entered law school and was working full time. I found I needed an outlet from the intense studying and work. I was in Boston and I identified a 10K race to work toward to get back into physical shape. Running gave me sanity and stress-relief from my overwhelming workload at school and work.
After accomplishing the 10K and loving the energy running was giving me, I looked for a new goal and found the NYC Half. Running my first New York Road Runners race in 2007 changed how I looked at racing. The race organization was phenomenal. The staff, volunteers, and other runners made me feel special, which helped me and inspired me to run. I wanted to keep running with NYRR. I had found a community in NYRR runners.
I began commuting to New York City for races and have since completed the 9+1 program eight times. I have always enjoyed my volunteer assignments and was continually impressed with how well-run the volunteer program is. It’s another great community, and I feel like my small part in the race-day success is really appreciated.
Recently, I set my sights on becoming a New York City Marathon Streaker. I’m at eight New York City Marathons now (I’ve finished 20 marathons total) and I’m looking forward to being at the starting line of the 2017 TCS New York City Marathon in November.
I also started thinking about how I could help and inspire more runners. I really feel like I’m among “my people” at NYRR races when I watch the kids run and see the smiles on their faces. At the Percy Sutton Harlem run this year, I loved watching the kids encourage each other to run harder and I did not mind it a bit as the kids blew past me toward the finish. I also found great inspiration watching the NYRR Times Square Youth Run at the United Airlines NYC Half this year.
Last fall, when my membership was up for renewal, the NYRR Philanthropic Member program became available. Though I love my trips to NYC for races, it’s difficult to plan for nine trips per year as I go toward my Streaker goal*.
Plus, as I learned more about NYRR’s youth and community programming, I realized the NYRR Philanthropic Member program was right for me as runner and as a philanthropist. Having the opportunity to contribute to programs that help kids develop healthy habits through running and experience the joy of accomplishing goals makes me feel like I am extending the NYRR community to the next generation. I’m helping and inspiring others as I was helped and inspired.
*NYRR Philanthropic Members receive advance registration for most races and guaranteed entry for some events, depending on membership level. Check here for more details.