Amanda Runs to Tell Breast Cancer Survivors: “You Matter”

Amanda Burkhardt is no stranger to running for a good cause. In 2006, she trained for her first marathon with Team In Training for the Leukemia Lymphoma Society.

“It was extra-motivating to know that the race and all the fundraising meant something to more than just me – that it would somehow make a difference in someone else’s life,” Amanda said.

When Amanda heard about the Komen Columbus Marathon for the Cure team in 2010, she couldn’t wait to get involved and is looking forward to her second year with the team.

Amanda is training for the half marathon during this year’s Columbus Marathon on Sunday, October 16, but she ran the full 26.2 miles last year and just as she was starting the last 13 miles, started running with a first-time marathon runner who she accompanied the rest of the Race.

Amanda says her favorite finish line treat is her husband, shown here at the 2010 Race.

“I had the opportunity to help her finish the last half of the marathon by encouraging her and just walking with her. The Komen team captains were very encouraging and waited for me at the finish line, even though I finished much later than my other teammates,” Amanda said. “It was great to know that everyone on the team was important and that my captains were there to celebrate the accomplishment even if the regular crowds were long gone.”

Amanda is most looking forward to continuing the spirit of thinking about others during this year’s race and getting to know what drives the other runners to keep going.

“Admittedly, I’m also excited that through the fundraising group [Crowdrise] my grandma’s name will be on one of the mile markers. I can’t wait to see it! She battled breast cancer when I was just a girl and was a survivor. What a woman she was!”

Crowdrise, the online network that is managing the Marathon for the Cure’s fundraising, and the Columbus Marathon, offered a promotion earlier this year where donors could “name” a mile marker during the marathon for just $26. This was open to the first 26 donors and quite a few Marathon for the Cure team members secured mile markers.

Even though Amanda has not been personally affected by breast cancer, she knows many women – family, friends and colleagues – who have all battled the disease.

“This is a small way of saying, ‘I love you. You matter. I am going to help you fight this in whatever way I can.’ Marathon for the Cure provides a wonderful opportunity to those who enjoy walking or running and want to make a difference in the lives of those impacted by breast cancer,” Amanda said. “Plus, who doesn’t like to wear a little pink!??”

If you’re interested in supporting Amanda’s fundraising efforts or getting involved with the Marathon for the Cure team, click here.