Runner Stories

Allison Beard

I began running after high school as a way to cope with my anxiety and depression. Since picking it up again, I’ve been able to grow into a stronger person both inside and out. I’m much more comfortable with and open about my struggles with mental illness, and I am in the best physical shape of my life. I’ve run farther and faster than ever before, all while helping myself maintain inner peace.

I co-founded Running from Anxiety, a nonprofit aimed at removing the stigma commonly associated with mental illness. We promote the mental health benefits of physical fitness and in doing so, encourage people to get active. We hold community runs at which we welcome athletes of all experience and provide a supportive environment, both physically and mentally. Because beginners often frequent our events, we work with community members who are new to exercise and help them by incorporating running into a healthy lifestyle.

This race is important to me on many levels because my organization strives to promote health in a two-fold manner: mental health and physical health. Participating in the race itself is the perfect way to demonstrate and promote good running habits.

Click here to see Running from Anxiety co-founder Christine’s story