#Team Wee-Wee Our Greatest Gifts

The last two years the months leading up to October I had been training for the Mankato Marathon.   This year was different.  I was logging a lot of miles with no races lined up and not sure where it was leading me. When people asked what race I was getting ready for, my simple answer most times was “life”.  That’s how I felt, I was preparing for life.  I then found out about a friend whose cancer had grown back and she needed help with funds for treatments.  It didn’t take long to realize this is where running was leading me.  There will be no designed start or finish line marked on the ground, No running bib or chip time.  No crowds cheering or aid stations.  No t-shirt or finisher medal.  I always said I would let running take me as far as I could go, until I was able to give back through it.  This year I will be giving back.  And I hope y’all will help me give back along the way.

I do not have a lot of money to give, but I can give a little bit of myself.  Honestly, if I could raise or give this money without anybody knowing or helping I would.  But it’s not a reality for me.  What is a reality is how I can help to raise it.  Running is my platform to get there. I am a completely average person, with a lot of great people in my life. They make me better every day. The world has a lot of negative energy and noise right now.  If we can spend some time doing something positive with whatever it is you choose, I think it can snowball.  I think it can rub off on others.  Sometimes a little goes a long way.

I am raising money to help out a friend and former classmate very much in need who’s cancer has come back and also two Charities (St. Judes and The Chad Greenway Lead the Way Foundation) for my boys Jobe (6yrs) and Jai (6Mnths) to give to.  We will be putting together a 5k and benefit on November 24th in my hometown of Woonsocket, SD.  But before the 5k I will be going on a little journey using my own two feet to travel from my current home in Le Sueur, MN to my old stomping grounds of Woonsocket, SD.  Roughly 250 miles.  I will be attempting to do this over a 6 day span from Oct 23rd-28th.  Roughly 40 miles a day.  When I originally committed to this endeavor I had been getting in a lot of mileage running and very confident in my abilities, but roughly 6-7 weeks ago I started having some foot issues.  So training has not been where I’ve wanted it to be.  I’ve only ran a handful of times in the last 6 weeks, but I have been doing a lot of cross and strength training to maintain some fitness.  Life sometimes throws you a curve ball.  But my curve ball is nothing compared to those who walk into that Dr’s office only to receive a devastating diagnosis. No excuses, I committed to something and I’m doing it!  Run a bit, walk a lot, possibly crawl a little and maybe even a few cartwheels.  I plan on raising a little money,  going as far as I can for as long as I can, most definitely having some fun and hopefully inspiring a few people to get out and be active and to never give up!  There’s always something a little more we can give or get.  Sometimes it just requires one more step.

Marie-#TeamWeeWee 

My friend and former classmate who was diagnosed with a cancerous Chordoma brain tumor a few years ago.  A skull based brain tumor. They were able to remove most of it, but it has now grown back and she now needs expensive treatments to try and take care of it again.  She currently has no insurance. She hopes to enroll and get insurance in November, but more important than the money is that I want her to know that there are people there for her and she does not have to battle this alone.  She has a go fund me page that I will share.  Please donate to either one.  I’m hoping to get Marie most of the funds she needs to start.  Maries Mom, who has since passed on, gave her the nickname Wee-Wee.  #TeamWeeWee.  You got this Marie!  Please keep Marie in your thoughts and prayers.  Keep fighting! We’re here for you!

https://www.gofundme.com/marie-collum-medical-expences

Our Greatest Gifts 5k and Benefit

This is something I plan on holding annually in my hometown of Woonsocket, SD.  The Town With the Beautiful Lake. One of the Greatest places on Earth with some of the best people in know and love!  All moneys raised will go to people or Charities of Jobe’s and Jai’s choosing each year.  I want them to know at a young age that one of the greatest gifts in life is giving.  I haven’t always done this myself.  My boys are my greatest gifts in life.  The reason I keep putting one foot in front of the other.  I want to be their hero someday, which means I have big shoes to fill.  I want my boys to know that no matter what they do in life or who they are, a janitor, a lawyer, a Cable guy or a Professional Athlete...it doesn’t matter!  That they can always give.  That if they have those qualities of being a good person, just like we have been taught by the actions of all the great people we have in our life...that they’re going to be successful.  At the benefit I will be having Marie cut my hair “man bun” that I have been growing for the past 2 ½ years to donate to Wigs for Kids or Locks of Love.  We will have 5k T-Shirts available for those who sign up or want to buy one to help with proceeds.

I started running 7 years ago to try and help cope with some of life’s challenges. My wife Jayni was pregnant with our first child, Jobe and I needed some positive changes in my life.  Running has got me to believe in things I never thought possible.  And hopefully I can help somebody else believe the same thing.  Running has changed me.  I see things a little clearer.   Things make a little more sense.  Running looks a lot like life to me, it get hard at times.  It hurts, it gets difficult.   But it has taught me If I keep going through those times, and never give up.  You will get through it.  It will get better! I know to some people it’s just running. To me it’s more than that…..it’s my gateway to be a better person….and maybe help somebody else be a little better too.  I know it will not resonate with everybody.  It doesn’t have to.  All I’m saying is find something that helps you be your best.  So you can give others your best.   If I can get one person to be a little better, to dream a little, to never give up, well, I really do not think it can get much better than that.  I’m not real sure if I can get the 250 miles done, but I’m going to give it my best shot.  And that’s all I can really ask of myself.  That’s all I’d ask of anybody, my boys, my family, my friends.  Anybody!  To believe in something and give it your best shot, no matter the outcome, if you have given your best, there is no failure in that. I do not see a failure in not completing the 250 miles.  The failure comes from not starting to begin with.  I don’t always get it right.  I’ve failed over and over at things.  This is my opportunity, our opportunity to get it right.  And I’m going to give it my best shot

I’m doing this for Marie, for my boys, for all those who cannot, for all those battling something!  Depression, anxiety, mental illness.  For all those who got that devastating diagnosis.  All those who have lost a loved one. Whose lives changed in an instant! Who do not believe anymore, for all those who want to give up!  Just start, one foot in front of the other.  Keep moving forward and do not look back. Its not always going to be easy.  You're worth it!  Keep Fighting!  Believe in yourself and never give up.    

 I am creating a Facebook page for the 5k and for anyone who would like to follow my journey West.  I will be providing updates there as I move along.  I also have a map of my route for anyone interested that will be on my event page.  I know its short notice, but anyone who would like to come and kick up some heels with me are more than welcome.  More the merrier! 

Our goal is $30,000.00, not only for a friend but maybe a few others whose paths aren’t always paved or who have hit a speed bump.  Or been throw one of life’s curve balls.  This Gifts for you.  I know we can do this.  But I need your help!   Please donate what you can, when you can.  Just a little, goes a long ways!  Thank you all in advance for your continued support.  My family and friends that have always been there.  You know who you are!  Many Thanks and Blessings -   Much Love, Jeff
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Organizer

Jeff Schulz 
Organizer
Le Sueur, MN
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