Meet Xtra Mile Boston Marathon Runner James Benz!
Meet the 2018 Xtra Mile Boston Marathon Team helping us to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the Special Olympics Movement by running 26.2 miles for inclusion!
James Benz is just one runner of our 26 member Boston Marathon team who’s not only making a difference in the lives of our athletes in 2018, but will have a lasting impact on Special Olympics Massachusetts that will help our movement and organization continue to support the athletes of today and tomorrow as we look forward towards the next 50 years of sports opportunities and inclusion!
Read on to learn more about James!
Where did you grow up? “I grew up in Acton, Massachusetts.”
Have you ran a marathon before? “No, I have, however, run a half-marathon.”
What does Special Olympics mean to you? “My late uncle, Bill, had Down syndrome and so Special Olympics Massachusetts has always been an organization near and dear to my heart, and the hearts of all my family and friends. Through attending various events and races over many years I have been able to see firsthand what a valuable program it is for the disabled community and their families. To me, what Special Olympics most is inclusion and opportunity. “
What made you decide to run the Boston Marathon? “This past August marked the tenth anniversary of my uncle’s passing and it is important to me that I do something to honor him and the tremendous life he lived. I have long contemplated running the Marathon as a charity runner for Special Olympics, but as it often does, the years have come and gone, each one busier than the last. Hitting the ten-year mark reminded me that life is short and there is no time like the present.”
What motivates you to go running when you really don’t feel like it? “I will likely think about my uncle and the struggles that he faced on a daily basis. Thinking about the challenges he faced should put things into perspective for me. I will also try to motivate myself by thinking about race day and the impact not training well will have. Also, my daughter asked me if I was going to win, so I can’t disappoint her!”
Want to run, bike, or participate in a triathlon to support Special Olympics Massachusetts? Join the Xtra Mile Today!