Saturday, October 16, 2004

Have Running Shoes, Will Travel - A Marathon in Every State

Have Running Shoes, Will Travel - A Marathon in Every State

When Beth Davenport laces up her running shoes and hits the pavement, it could be anywhere in the country. This forty-five year old runner and member of the 50 States Marathon Club, will soon be completing her goal of running a marathon in every state. On September 24th, Beth will cross the finish line of the Clarence Demar Marathon in Keene, New Hampshire - state number 50 on her list.

Santa Fe, NM (PRWEB) July 9, 2006

When Beth Davenport laces up her running shoes and hits the pavement, it could be anywhere in the country. This forty-five year old runner and member of the 50 States Marathon Club, will soon be completing her goal of running a marathon in every state. On September 24th, Beth will cross the finish line of the Clarence Demar Marathon in Keene, New Hampshire - state number 50 on her list.

A native of Greenfield, Massachusetts, Davenport is looking forward to her family and friends cheering her on, as she completes her last marathon. “Keene is about an hour away from where I grew up. So my mom and some friends will be driving up for the event,” Beth explained to Marketing Manager, Louise Roach of SnowPack (one of her running sponsors). “And maybe we’ll have a party afterward to celebrate.”

Beth started running at the age of 30, seemingly by accident. She enjoyed walking to work, but one day found herself behind schedule. To pick up the pace, she decided to run. A co-worker who happened to be a runner, saw Beth sprinting through the parking lot and invited her to a group run. When Beth explained that she wasn’t really a runner, the co-worker noted “but I just saw you running!” It was at that moment, Beth’s running career was born!

A year later in 1992, Davenport ran her first marathon. In 2001, Beth became a member of the 50 States Marathon Club on the day she completed her 20th marathon, a minimum requirement to join the organization. After that, she was on her way. With careful planning and strict budgeting of time and finances, Beth has accomplished her dream. “It can cost over $20,000 to complete 50 marathons. Travel expenses, race fees and paying for hotels can add up. One of the best parts of this process has been meeting people from the 50 States Club and sharing rides to keep down the costs. Plus the generosity of friends from all over the country who have put me up when I’m running in their state, has been great!”

When questioned about marathon memories, Beth recalled her most difficult marathon was in Stowe, Vermont in 2002, running in 90+ degree weather, up the side of a mountain. The most memorable event was in 1996 at the 100th Boston Marathon. “I got wrapped up in the energy of the event and the huge number of runners – over 35,000!” She recently completed her 49th marathon on June 17th in Anchorage, Alaska.

Her advice to would-be marathoners, dreaming of accomplishing the same goal: “Don’t force it. Just enjoy it!”

To date, Davenport has 68 marathons to her credit. “I’m not planning to stop after I reach state #50. My wish list includes being a member of the 100 Marathon Club. If I average 8 marathons a year, I’ll reach 100 by age 50!”

When asked the most valuable life lesson she has learned from pursuing her goal, Beth thought for a moment - then confidently replied, “Persistence!”

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