94-Year-Old Woman Inspires Us All to Run With Purpose

School’s out. The weather is sort of decent some days. You may have been considering hitting the pavement and going for a nice run outside. Or maybe you’ve been telling yourself it’s time to sign up for that half marathon you’ve been thinking about for ages. Oh, just me? No. I’m sure I’m not alone in these feelings, right? Well, if you (like me) are looking for that last bit of motivation and inspiration to get you going, look no further.

Just a few days ago, on June 4, Harriette Thompson became the oldest woman in the world to finish a half marathon. She is 94 years old. It goes without saying, but I’ll say it anyway because she deserves it: That’s amazing.

She completed the San Diego Rock ‘n’ Roll half marathon officially in 3:42:56.

Credit: Mike Novak

If that isn’t enough to inspire you to get up and get moving, there’s more. Harriette Thompson also set a world record in 2015 at the same race. She became the oldest woman in the world to complete a full marathon.

But she’s not doing this just for the fun of it. She’s a two-time cancer survivor, and she runs to raise money for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. She has raised more than $100,000.

Her motivation is truly inspiring. Sure, it’s also inspiring that she’s rockin’ a Rock ‘n’ Roll marathon at 94 years old, but it’s doubly impressive that she’s doing so to support such a worthy cause.

If you’d like to take a page from her book (sooner rather than later), here are a few ways you could raise money yourself while running.

Credit: Mike Novak

Fundraise While Running

1. ASPCA (American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals): Join Team ASPCA and complete a virtual 5K to raise money to protect cute, innocent animals.

2. Chron’s & Colitis: Choose your distance and start fundraising immediately.

3. Charity Miles (iOS and Android app): Download the app, choose your charity, and walk, run, or bike to earn money for your chosen recipient.

4. Razoo: Organize your own online fundraising campaign.

Would running for a greater purpose make you more likely to get moving? I know it would for me! — Megan 

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  1. Harriette Thompson is SO inspiring! I’ll be thinking of her when I run the Utah Valley Half Marathon this Saturday. Thanks for sharing this, Megan.

  2. Pamela says:

    What an inspiring woman. I haven’t ever done a marathon, but I after reading this I need to.
    Thanks for sharing.

  3. I am scolding myself to get my butt moving faster! Harriette, you are my inspiration! Thanks for sharing this.

  4. Very Inspiring Woman Harriette Thompson. Thank You for sharing this. Its truly inspired me a lot.

  5. Chau says:

    Wonderful to see, so inspirational for me.

  6. Deano says:

    Wow! How inspiring is this! 🙂