Culture

Why Women’s Running Is Headed To Las Vegas!

To run, of course! Find out why this year's event is different and better than the rest.

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This week marks the start of my training for the Rock ‘n’ Roll Vegas Half Marathon. Normally, the first few days of a training schedule are marked by frustration at my (lack of) fitness, which leads to trepidation for the race ahead. But this time, I’m full of pure excitement. The start line couldn’t come fast enough!

That’s because this will be an incredibly special race. I have the privilege of running as a Transamerica Tomorrow Chaser in support of the Edith Sanford Breast Cancer Foundation, which advances the prevention and treatment of breast cancer. This foundation is incredibly special because the focus is not simply on awareness; the research-forward mission also aims to unlock each woman’s genetic code to one day create a world completely free of the disease.

Related: Learn More About Edith Sanford

As a Transamerica Tomorrow Chaser, I will start as the very last runner in the race. For every racer I pass, Transamerica will donate $1 to Edith Sanford. I don’t think I’ve ever had better motivation to run faster!

I’ll have a special running buddy by my side. Thad Beaty, guitarist for the Grammy Award-winning band Sugarland, will be matching me stride for stride as we run down the Vegas Strip. One of the most positive and humble people you’ll ever meet, Beaty has a special connection to the cause. His mother was diagnosed with cancer in 2009. The musician says his way of dealing with the terrifying health news was to make a positive change in himself. After years on the road, he started running and focusing on his diet. In an 18-month period, he lost an incredible 70 pounds and says that his life has never been the same.

For the Women’s Running team, the Edith Sanford Breast Cancer Foundation’s work also hits close to home. In 2013, Nicki Miller, our magazine’s managing editor (also everyone’s favorite smoothie maker, an exceptional writer and blossoming trail runner) was diagnosed with breast cancer. Luckily she was able to detect the disease early and her treatment was successful. Now we have the privilege of being inspired by a breast cancer survivor every single day.

Related: 10 Things I Learned About Runner Because I Had Breast Cancer

The scary facts are that approximately one out of eight women will develop breast cancer over the course of her lifetime, so chances are your life has in some way been touched by the disease as well. If you want to do something about it today, we have a few ideas:

  • Educate yourself. Learning about proper screening and detection could save your life! Learn more at edithsanford.com.
  • Consider running a race for TeamEdith. They organization is amazing, and they make it so easy to support the cause.
  • Follow along with our Vegas journey! Thad and I will be reporting on our training so you can follow along from the comfort of your iPhone.
  • Go for a run! Regular exercise has been shown to lower the risk of breast cancer by at least 25 percent, which reminds me—I better get on that, so I can keep up with Thad.