Last year, Steven Thomas ran the Sears Great Canadian Run, Ottawa to Montebello edition. The 100-kilometre run is most often undertaken as a relay, but Thomas decided to do the whole distance, setting the goal of raising $10,000 – just five weeks before the event. He talked with Mike Herzog of GoodGuysTri who was happy to help out; in the end, Thomas raised $13,500 on his own, toward a total of $17,000 when the donations from GGT came in.
This year, Thomas and Herzog decided to make it even bigger, deciding they would both run the full distance, and see who they could recruit to join them. Figuring they would have six or 7 runners, they set a fundraising goal of $30,000. To their surprise, within 48 hours of the request, over 20 runners had committed.
On October 5, the team of 23 runners will make the trek together. One of Herzog’s favourite sayings is that there is no such thing as individual success – and that’s why they decided they’d all do the run together. “We wanted to do something epic this year,” says Herzog. “But we also wanted it to be symbolic. Together we can overcome anything – from running 100K to finding a cure for kids’ cancer.”
They’ve certainly proven that. While each team member has their own individual fundraising goal, all together, they’ve raised over $75,000 with just a little over a week left before the event.
As anyone who has done it can tell you, fundraising can be a daunting task. “I was worried about reaching my initial $2,000 goal, and I was concerned that I would drive my network of family and friends crazy in the process,” says team member Sarah Muldoon. “To my delight, fundraising has been a breeze! When people hear that our GoodGuysTri team is running 100K to help end kids’ cancer, people are so eager to help. The cause really speaks for itself.” This success led to her doubling her goal, and she was within a few hundred dollars of meeting it at last count.
The team has done some really creative things to raise the funds. Not only have they approached individuals for donations, they’ve leveraged the power of their team size and the GoodGuysTri name to get corporate sponsors. They’ve also hosted a wide range of events, including: bootcamp workouts, silent auctions, a 100 kilometre relay on a treadmill, “Beer for a Cure,” the Dinner to End Kids Cancer, and “Another Chance to Dance” adult prom, to name a few.
If you’re wondering where all of these crazy event-planning ultramarathoners came from, you’ll be interested to know they’re not all ultramarathoners yet. “I have never run farther than a marathon so the thought of running 100 kilometres is daunting – and crazy!” says Muldoon, but she’s not worried. “We will be running together, supporting each other and ensuring that we all cross the finish line together.
“The run is really just a celebration of what we’ve achieved fundraising,” says Herzog, adding, “GoodGuysTri is about endurance sport to do good. If you tie your goals to something bigger, there’s no chance of failing.”
To learn more about GoodGuysTri and why they are running, visit their website. You can donate to the cause, view the 2012 mini-documentary and other videos, meet the team, and check out their upcoming events!