Orthopedics team braces for the finish line
Posted April 9, 2014
Updated April 10, 2014
Dr. Rob Jones gave his employees an unusual task: to run a half marathon. He even made them sign a contract saying they’d cross the finish line.
The team of women will represent Raleigh’s Impact Orthopaedics in the 2014 Rock ‘n’ Roll Raleigh 1/2 Marathon, armed with new running shoes as they complete the 13.1-mile run.
“If they cross the finish line, then they don’t have to pay me back for the shoes,” Jones said.
Physical therapists and exercise specialists helped the women gear up for the race.
“We all have gone through a gait analysis just to make sure that we are running properly, so that we don’t injure ourselves during the marathon,” said team member Syreeta McCullers.
Although some of the team members lack athletic experience, they’re up for the challenge.
“I’ve never really been an athlete, a runner, in my life,” said team member Erica Hernandez.
“When we started, it was pretty intimidating,” team member Erin O’Reilly said.
But the training program helped the team get motivated for the task.
“There are times when we want to give up,” said team member Heather Stagg. “We dug deep, and we have inspired each other. We’ve used our faith a lot to get us through.”
The women say they’ve gained health benefits that inspire them to lace up for another run. This won’t be their last time on the track.
“We have enjoyed it,” said team member Sherry Woodson-Ringer. “We have done everything that we could do possibly to get through this.”
The marathon begins and ends in the heart of downtown Raleigh, and runners will wind their way east to Chavis Park, north through the Oakwood neighborhood before making a turn to the west. The course passes William Peace University and Cameron Village. Runners of the half marathon make the turn on the campus of North Carolina State University and head back to the start/finish line. Those who choose to run the full 26.2-mile marathon continue west on Hillsborough Street and past PNC Arena before circling back downtown.