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Running Down the Road to Better

One question that frequently swirls in my brain when I think of the Boilermaker is: ‘can we be better?’
Of course the answer is always yes as we, as humans, are imperfect creatures frequently making wrong-headed, uninformed or just plain dumb decisions.
The core mission of the Boilermaker is to change people’s lives for the better with an element of fun.
Health and wellness is our gig.
The Boilermaker is (hopefully) the culmination of weeks and months of training by folks to tackle Boilermaker Sunday or perhaps to simply be able to manage to walk Boilermaker Saturday.
As we endeavor trying to make a community a healthier one we’re going to start looking a bit more holistically at the needs of folks who call our place home.
Certainly there’s a lot of work to be done: Oneida County comes in #56 out of New York State’s 62 counties health-wise. My, my: lots of opportunities!
So it’s thinking about things like….
Disconnected trail systems, lack of or poorly maintained pedestrian/ running/ biking areas. This is an issue in both our urban and rural regions. The Erie Canal and a formally developed canal path in our region has so much potential that is as of yet unrealized. Our park system is a historical treasure but certainly could use some help.
The availability of fresh, nutritious fruits and vegetables to those who are transportation-challenged.
The creation of the West Utica Farmers Market, formally launched next year, will be a natural for us including an education component every week.
And I can’t get the idea of a community garden out of my head.
How about making running more accessible to those who, for whatever reason, can’t participate in traditional races. Rather than expecting the neighborhood to come to the run perhaps we bring the run to the neighborhood?
The kids are in the streets: perhaps we get them running for the right reasons!
So in reading my ramblings you might be lead to believe I have forgotten about the Boilermaker- Heavens no!
The Boilermaker is the engine that inspires folks and gives us the opportunity to engage in these endeavors.
Forget about the race and all these other things could never happen.
Saying that for the first time we will be looking actively at like-minded partners that can help bring resources to bear- we can’t, nor should we, do it alone.
These are big issues that no one organization can solve, but perhaps a number of us can!
No doubt this journey will be a long road marked with steep inclines and occasional adverse weather.
But it’s where we need to go.

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