March 25, 2019
Before we were blessed with our two little ones – Kayla 4.5 and Colin 1.5 – we spent a lot of our free time running and traveling. It didn’t take long before we combined these passions and began doing destination races – completing our quest to run a half marathon in all 50 states in late 2013. As a family, we have scaled back on destination races, but remain active and avid runners. Both Kayla and Colin have called the Buehler YMCA home on the weekends since they were infants. Having a loving environment that the kids love to go to, provides us with peace of mind and has enabled us to keep our running form intact. In training for a spring marathon in 2018, the weather was not cooperating, so I was doing a long run on the treadmill when I really began to reflect on how integral Buehler YMCA is on our lives, and the lives of our children – I guess 18 miles on a treadmill tends to make a mind wander. After talking with Kristin, we knew we wanted to find a way to help underserved children served by the Y, but in a non-traditional fashion. As we brainstormed, I threw out the idea of a treadmill marathon, and Kristin immediately responded “I’ll run a half marathon”. So, the idea of a treadmill marathon relay was born. The name “Miles for Smiles” comes from our own experience as runners and parents. Let’s be honest, kids are incredibly rewarding, and their smiles and laughter are infectious. In running, sometimes miles can be challenging, but it’s hard not to smile when you cross the finish line and complete something that once felt insurmountable. Miles for Smiles represents runners logging miles to raise money in order to provide children with the opportunity to experience the programs and positive environment at the Buehler YMCA. We never wanted this event to be about us, or the runners, this event is about the kids, and always will be.
- Mike Kiss
The Buehler YMCA would like to thank Mike, Kristin, and friends for their efforts and committment in partnering with us to help better serve our Buehler community. If you would like to be a part of the cause and donate to Miles for Smiles, click here or visit www.buehlerymca.org/marathon.