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Does Running Spark Joy?

Does Running Spark Joy?

By Karen Hendricks


“Does this spark joy?”

That is the question organizational expert Marie Kondo encourages us to ask, as we attempt to organize our closets, and decide which items should stay—or go.

We know that running is certainly sparking joy in many lives today, thanks to the ever-increasing numbers of runners and races throughout the U.S. and the world.

Every day and every run is cause for celebration, but perhaps the biggest runner’s holiday is Wednesday, June 5. That’s Global Running Day, a celebration of all runners, all ages, all abilities, and all the reasons that running sparks joy in our lives.

Here at Fleet Feet Mechanicsburg, we call it “The Big Run.” It’s much more than a 5K—it’s a fun package of events built around the 5K including a Harrisburg Senators game, a great t-shirt and medal, food, prizes, camaraderie with the Central PA running community, and more.

Click here to sign up for all the fun!

Over the past three years, it’s been exciting to see increases in local, national, and global participation.

Even more exciting are the stories behind each and every runner. While there are plenty of famous runners known for their inspirational quotes about running, we thought it would be fun to shine a spotlight on Central PA runners and their quotes!


From Renee Kolacek, 37, one of our Fleet Feet coaches: Running is my stress and anxiety reliever…it keeps the arthritis from settling. I often joke that I must keep moving otherwise I will freeze up like the tin man. Running has brought so many wonderful people into my life....Running has given me an extended family.    

A special story from Sharon Sheaffer, 40, of Mechanicsburg:

I lost my dad when I was 21. I developed anxiety…but I started running and never looked back. I am so glad I did because three years ago I discovered I had an atrial septal defect (hole in my heart). I met with a cardiologist and was in surgery within a month to have  it repaired. I was told that running most likely saved my life because I kept my heart and lungs strong. My favorite running experience was my first marathon this past September. I was cleared by my cardiologist to run and so I did. I love this photo because my two boys are in it telling me not to quit. I was on mile 23 and I remember bursting into tears when I saw them. I was never so excited to cross a finish line! I hope that I am running until I’m 90. Now that my heart is functioning the way it should, I need to put it to good use.

Let’s celebrate all the reasons we run! Join us for The Big Run on June 5 (click here to sign up for all the fun)!


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