From Girls on the Run founder and vision keeper Molly Barker:

"Thank you for sharing your energy, passion and time.  Your support of our program will help us advance our mission to thousands of girls.  I also hope this experience will inspire you to a live a Girls on the Run lifestyle!

"Tha's where these Footnotes 'step' in.  I've been a runner since I was fifteen.  At that time I was struggling with the chanlleges of adolescence.  Who am I within this changing body?  What is my purpose? Running, in many ways was my sanctuary during thsoe turbulent years.  Now that I am joyfully immersed in my work, life as a single mother and serving as a role model to literally thousands of young girls, I find that running fuels me, ignites me and fills me with a new sense of purpose.  I hope that as a Girls on the Run SoleMate, YOU are inspired, motivated and gently pushed toward your greatest potential, too!

"I invite you to enlist the philosophies of our program in your own life by starting each of your training runs with these small footnotes.  As you train for your event, you will undoubtedly experience many emotions.  Embrace each and every one of them.  Run with joy!  Run with intention!  Run with purpose!  Most importantly, remember that the girls in our program are cheering you on, every step of the way!"


August 2: Learning About Collaboration

"I do enjoy collaboration.  I seek and thrive on projects where I am going to learn from the people I'm working with."  William Kempe

I used to have a hard time working with others and being on a team.  This came from two schools of thought.  One was that no one could do it as well as I could.  I felt compelled to be the best and to be the best meant I had to do it all.  Ironically, the second was rooted in a fear of failure.  I was afraid that my teammates might discover I wasn't the best and my feelings of being "less than perfect" would be "found out." Since starting Girls on the Run, I've had the privilege of collaborating on EVERYTHING... from writing new curricula to creating the Footprints project... and what I have learned in the process has been life-changing.  We have fun.  We express ourselves.  We celebrate our individual skills.  We laugh.  We push.  We grown.  We evolve!  None of that would have been possible had I tried to go it alone.  Today, on your run, consider areas where you might collaborate more.  Is it a task at work?  Caring for your children?  A community project?  Training for this event?


July 30: Centering, The Importance of Slowing Down

"See how nature -- trees, flowers, grass -- grows in silence; see the stars, the moon and the sun, how they move in silence.  We need silence to be able to touch souls."  Mother Teresa

I used to be running from instead of to.  Not comfortable with the space of myself, I used running as a means to get out from under my thoughts and run away from the discomfort of my own skin.  I could somehow avoid problems by numbing them out with the miles, the training and the exhaustion that comes with it.  All of that changed somewhere in my 30's.  I found silence on my early morning runs - the silence of joy, the silence of gratitude, the silence of peace with myself and my thoughts.  Today while you run, consider the importance of silence in your life.  Let your breathing get into sync with your footsteps and listen to the harmonious rhythm they create.  Let your mind wander and make note of where it goes.  Celebrate the sanctuary of silence that running provides and when you are done, feel it settle comfortably within your day.  You are centered, silent and calm.  Very likely, this will be an awesome run!


July 26: Celebrate Gratittude

"When we are grateful, fear disappears and abundance appears." Anthony Robbins

Ahhhh! Gratitude abounds! Oftentimes, the boxes that confine and define our spirits are steeped in the belief that we are not enough and that we do not have enough.  The most reliable and rapid way to step right out of the Girl or Boy Box is to proclaim your gratitude for something... anything!  Say it out loud!  Right now, shout out something for which you are grateful. Got for it!  Set your intention-dial to gratitude today.  Every step of today's run, feel the gratitude that comes with being outside, moving your body and sharing time with friends.  Say it out loud or just say it to yourself, but become conscious of the way gratitude affects your workout today.  Very likely, this will be an awesome run!


July 19: Being emotional is healthy

"The walls we buld around us to keep sadness out also keep out the joy."  Jim Rohn

As a young girl in the south in the 1970's on of the key messages that came out of MY Girl Box, loud and clear was, "Thou shall NOT express anger."  While I realize that times have changed, the messages of the Girl and Boy Box are often deeply entrenched into our approach toward the expression of emotion.  For boys, sharing your tears, fears and sorrows are often seen as a sign of weakness.  For girls, displaying anger, assertiveness or strength can still be labeled as "bitchiness."  The truth is, being human means feeling all of our emotions from the tops of our heads to the tips of our toes.  Feeling means we are alive, real, authentic and honest with ourselves.  Today while you run, make a list of the emotions you have felt over the last several days.  See what emotions are revealed as you cover your distance today.  When you are finished, fill in this blank, "I feel _______!" Take the time to share it with your running buddy(ies) or Solemate team mates!!


July 12: Fueling our healthy pace

"Do vegetarians eat animal crackers?" Lanie, third grader in Girls on the Run

Food. We all have a personal relationship with it. Pleasure, entertainment, family gatherings, stress, boredom - food fuels many facets of our lives. I learned pretty quickly on, when training for my first marathon, that my performance was enhanced considerably when I drank plenty of water, ate fresh fruits and veggies and had enough protein to rebuild tired and achy muscles. While running this weekend, try to feel your body's strength and your muscles in actions. Take the time to celebrate the power of your body and ponder how you nourish, care for and celebrate all that it does for you. What changes do you need to make to your diet to honor, embrace and activate your body's power?