Our friend Gene is the founder of Charity Miles, an app we frequently partner with to raise money for worthy causes through physical activity. He even won a Webby this week for his incredible work. Plus, he met Doge at the ceremony!
Below is a quick Q&A with Gene about fitness and #MotherCulture. Enjoy, and don’t forget to walk, run or bike for a good cause with Charity Miles. Every mile matters!
LW: You sure are an active guy these days. Did you grow up running marathons? How did your family influence your physical fitness habits?
G: I didn’t grow up running. But my family was always active. We’d go skiing together on the weekends— a tradition my mom started with her parents as a little girl. I’d throw the baseball in the front yard with my dad after dinner. We rode bikes and rollerbladed together. It was just a way of life for us.
LW: Do you find that contributing to charitable causes helps you stick to your fitness routine? What else keeps you motivated to get moving?
G: For me, running is about storytelling. Maybe not through words, but through action. When I started running marathons, it was a way for me to express my commitment to finding a cure for Parkinson’s disease (in honor of my grandfather). But as I got more into it, I became even more inspired by other runners’ stories. I remember being at the starting line of my first marathon: Chicago, 2002. Looking around at the 20,000 other runners, I could see that each one had a story on their face. And each story was about to change over the course of the next 26.2 miles. I was (and am) honored to share in these stories. This is what really motivates me.
LW: Do you have any Mother’s Day traditions in your family?
G: We usually have some kind of brunch with my Mom in the morning and then go to my aunt’s house for a barbecue in the afternoon. When I was younger, my cousins and I would play roller hockey all afternoon. In the last few years, my mom and I have rented bikes in New York City and rode around Central Park or down the Hudson River Greenway.
LW: For folks who are new to a daily exercise regimen, or those who really just like to push themselves to exhaustion, what would you recommend in terms of a refreshing, high protein snack to have after working out?
G: Lifeway Kefir, of course! I like mine with fresh blueberries, raspberries and blackberries.