Summer Sessions 2012: John Rigney on Inspiration in All Shapes & Sizes

SS Blog #3: July 8, 2012

Inspiration in all Shapes & Sizes

When I was in my early 20s I swore I’d never run a marathon.  I recall friends of mine who were into running and were encouraging me to go the distance.  I thought, “Why on earth would I punish myself like that?”  I saw friend after friend go run 26.2.  Then I saw Kirsten, my girlfriend (now my wife) run one.  I watched her run it in LA.  Wow.  I was blown away.  Not just by her planning, training, preparations, drive, and actual running of it.  I was blown away by those who ran it with her.  Every age, shape, size, height, race, etc. was out there.  I saw people running in costumes.  I saw people running it backwards.  I saw people pushing themselves like I’d never had the courage to do.  That was when I started thinking…

Now, at 40 years old, I’ve run a couple marathons, a bunch of halfs, and even competed in an ultra-race (another story altogether!).  What I’ve realized through all of this is that inspiration comes in all shapes and sizes.  It also comes in all arenas – physical, emotional, intellectual, and more!

I recently asked the 2012 Summer Sessions community who inspired them and why during our first week.  Here are some of their comments:

“I was inspired by the sense of family on our Habitat for Humanity trip…”

“I was inspired by the honesty in our new Discovery Group…”

“Hannah inspired me to constantly rethink how I view people…”

“I was inspired by Sean’s effort in the timed mile…”

“Liz, you inspired me with your energy and enthusiasm and how you rev people up!”

“I was inspired by Danny’s maturity – it is far beyond his years.”

I am continually inspired by students, faculty, and parents in this job.  Their courage and positive attitudes lift up the community and help us all work towards our best.

Have a great week!



See photos from Hyde’s Summer Sessions HERE.