2013-2014 was a phenomenal year for In The Arena in Alamosa. Looking back to when it all started, 2006, I never imagined the true impact athletes/mentors could make in our youth and the community.
It would take me endless entries to describe each positive impact we've made in many children in Alamosa. Hard to believe that all the kids that we started the program with just started their freshman year of High School. I would say that 90% of those reached by either listening to my story, jumped rope for the heart with, paced or cheered on a their mile fun run when they were in 3rd grade are now involved in sports or an extra curricular activity.
What about the kids we reached this year? 90% of them are talking about joining a sport, eating healthier, they are more social, self-confidence is up and actually stop and say hi when we meet at the store.
Today, I can still say what I said 8 years ago : "I love my In The Arena kids, Im in love with our mission" Im proud to be part of what In The Arena has become. To be able to share my story and reach out to our youth is a true blessing and I look forward to continue making an impact many more kids lives.
After being knocked down and out of competition for a year and a half, It does feel wonderful to have a bigger reason and opportunity to try again. My reason and biggest motivators to go back to competition and go after a spot to be part of the 2016 Marathon Olympic trials are the thousands of In The Arena kids we've reached not only this past year, but over the years. Like Roosevelt said: "If I fail, I will fail while daring greatly" What a blessing to keep this story alive!
With this years partnership with L.L. Bean I can only anticipate that the best years of In The Arena are ahead of us! What an honor to be associated with such an amazing retail company.
My endless gratitude to the following people and organizations for helping us have another successful In The Arena Year in the San Luis Valley:
ITA Founder: Amory Rowe
My immediate family in Alamosa
Immigrant Resource Center
Cooking Matters, Colorado
Tierra Nueva Apartments
Looking forward to what the future holds!