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Why I Run: Tonia Blanchet

Tonia in some of her signature bright apparel at mile 13 of the Dismal Swamp Stomp Half, April 2011

Today’s guest blogger is a “fastionista” many of you already know: Tonia Blanchet, a mom of three girls living in Virginia, who was pictured in the Runner’s World feature SBS wrote. Tonia is training for the New York City Marathon. Find her at and @tmbrunnerfirst on Twitter.

“I ran and ran and ran every day, and I acquired this sense of determination, this sense of spirit that I would never give up, no matter what else happened.” - Wilma Rudolph

Did you ever consider why you started running? We all have our reasons. Maybe, you wanted to lose weight or find yourself. Maybe you wanted to get away from it all or check something off your bucket list. For me, it was a combination of all those things and a million other reasons, too. In fact, the “whys” of my running vary from day to day, but one thing always stays the same: my determination.

When it comes down to it, I continue to run because I am fueled by determination. The determination to always strive to be better than I was yesterday. The determination to show my children you can get pure joy out of something, even if you NEVER walk away as the champion. The determination to silence everyone who has ever doubted me, even if that means silencing myself, as well. And although, it may not be the reason I started running, it is without a doubt this determination that keeps me running.

I may never run a 5:00 mile or log 70 miles a week. I’m not going to win a race or even beat all of my friends. But none of that matters. Running is my passion. A passion I want to share with others. It is more than just a hobby. It is a force that has forever changed my life. Running has allowed me to be the best mom and wife and me I can possibly be. It’s not a chore or a job (because I am WAY TOO SLOW for that). Or even a requirement. It is just the simple act of placing one foot in front of the other--a simple act that helps define me.


32 responses to “Why I Run: Tonia Blanchet

  1. Your words brought tears to my eyes. Thank you for expressing so eloquently what running means to me. There are been doubters who, upon hearing my race times, say “is that even running?? Sounds more like a fast walk” and it has crushed me in the past. But then I remember how far I’ve come and your words just solidify that. Thank you again, from the bottom of my heart, for reminding me of how special the simple act of running is to all of us.

  2. The self doubt thing really hit home. I fight that every time I start a new goal. Good to know others feel the same!

  3. I love that you run to silence yourself as a doubter. Make that one more reason why I run. Here’s to me being successful at that.

  4. I’ve never read before that someone else was passionate about running. Me too! You summed up why I run as well.

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