Author Archive

SOBO Member Of the Month: Lissan

Lissan Y. came on board in March and her favorite workout is running hills and climbing the bleachers in a stadium. In the next three months she wants to get back into the groove of longer runs and would like to do a 10K in the future or possibly the upcoming Baltimore Running Festival. After a tough race, her favorite meal is an egg sandwich-she says its so she can get back some much needed protein. Her last race was the Sneaks Come Out at Night relay- she and her team did well and really enjoyed cheering each other on towards the end of each relay leg. Running isn’t her only love though, most people don’t know that Lissan enjoys all kinds of intense activities- like skydiving, bungee jumping, jet skiing, hiking, rock climbing. When Lissan is running, she thinks about “all the other people that got up early that morning and are going through the same things I am.  Also running for those who aren’t able to.” Her biggest challenge is trying to maintain a good running posture in order to keep pressure off her knees. To a brand-new runner, Lissan would say

“Pace yourself.  At the beginning you may think that you have all this energy and try to run fast.  However, you will probably run out of steam at the end, or somewhere in the middle.  Instead, you should start at a slower cadence and try to maintain that pace all the way through.”

MCVET Members of the Month: Herbert and Cate!

Herbert C. started just one month ago in June, and since then he’s racked up 70.5 miles! Since joining, he has come to value “every day, every relationship” and points out that a a single moment doesn’t encompass the relationships he’s made. Herbert’s biggest challenge is to be patient, know that it takes time and to keep going. When he runs, he thinks to himself- just keep going. Put one foot in front of the other. In the next three months he wants to increase his endurance past the 3 mile mark, and in October he will be participating in the Baltimore Running Festival!

Peter (MCVET team leader) says that ” Herbert’s been a quite an inspiration to have on the team. Beginning as a walker, he’s pushed himself a little further and little faster each and every run and has made such tremendous strides to improve his running. Even more enjoyable than getting to see these improvements, has been the chance to spend our mornings with him. He brings a cheerful and positive attitude with him in the mornings that’s always brightens up his teammates day!

Cate is on the right.

Cate C. has been a member since February and since joining, remembers two instances as the best running moments she’s had. 1- The first morning she was able to run two miles; and 2- The Operation Oliver 5K when her MCVET teammates and friends came out on the course to help her finish strong. “Their support and encouragement was just what I needed to push a little harder.” When Cate is running, she focuses on her running, her breathing and tries to take in her surroundings – saying “it is such a perfect way to be present in the moment.” Cate’s goal is to run a half marathon in the next three months and she plans on running the Baltimore Running Festival in October. Her biggest running challenge is “Listening to my body but not letting it be an excuse; recognizing which aches and pains can be worked through and which ones require some extra rest and attention. Some mornings these old bones have a lot to say! ;)”

Her team leader says, “Cate’s devotion to her teammates is just one of the reason she’s been such a tremendous asset to Team MCVET’s roster since she joined this past winter. Personally very active in veteran affairs, she’s been incredibly supportive and involved in so many of our teammate’s efforts, whether its on behalf of our nonres teammates’ and their work in the Oliver community or through the support she provides each morning for our members. She and Herbert have become running companions, and she’s been encouraging him in his improvement as a runner, while she herself prepares for her own half-marathon! We’re so lucky to have Cate on the team and wish her all the best this fall!”

Helping Up Mission’s Members of the Month: Charmaine D. and Tony O. !

Tony O. joined us in June 2012 and has already logged an amazing 100 miles! He remembers his best moment so far as the Sneaks Come Out at Night race he completed recently. His biggest challenge has been gathering the motivation to wake up in the morning to run, and in the next three months his goal is to really focus on his step work. When he runs, Tony thinks about nothing! He says that’s what he likes best about running. In October, Tony looks forward to doing the half-marathon at the Baltimore Running Festival.

Rob C. (HUM team leader) says that “Tony’s a great guy and fits in well on our team. Although he’s pretty quiet, he has a way of making his teammates laugh. After starting out with some trouble waking up and attending runs, Tony has done an amazing job of attending all runs recently and has really embraced his training. A few of us have also had the chance to see him play the drums as part of the HUM band…and he Rocked Out! I am excited to see what will come next for Tony as he continues to move his life forward in a positive way!”

Charmaine D. has been a member of Back On My Feet since May 2009!! Her favorite moment in all that time was “our circle at the 2010 Baltimore Running Festival. We must have had at least 100 people or more! BoMF really does create this huge positive presence when we all circle up and say our serenity prayer. I remember it so clearly because I was running my first marathon that day and I was soooo nervous. Seeing all my teammates in the circle and knowing what they’ve achieved to get there gave me the energy and inspiration I needed. It was such an awesome day!” Running is Charmaine’s stress reliever.  When she runs, she thinks about something that’s bothering her and puts it into a positive perspective. She says that by the end of her run, she feels stronger, has a clear head and feels ready to tackle any challenge! Her next race is the Philadelphia Marathon on November 18th. Baltimore BOMF is going to be representing at the Philly race with over 15 members going! Charmaine looks forward to running in Philly where BOMF got its start.

HUM team leader, Rob C. says “Charmaine is an All-Star Teammate! She is one of the longest standing teammates at HUM and she is more enthusiastic and involved now more then ever. She does an amazing job as our Social Coordinator and is very helpful and friendly in so may ways. You can always find Charmaine helping out a new teammate and offering support any way she can. I know I can always count on her when needed and that means a lot to me. We are very lucky to have Charmaine on our team and she truly is an awesome teammate and friend!”

Christopher’s Place Members of the Month: Karol M. !

Karol M. has been a part of Back On My Feet since January. She “absolutely loves the BoMF community! It’s so positive, motivating, & encouraging. Everyone is out there supporting each other. I remember my very first run with CP…as I was coming in from my run, people who I had just met were screaming my name and cheering me on. I thought to myself, Wow! This is amazing. I feel right at home. This is the place for me.”  Karol sometimes finds it challenging to get out there and put in the miles for when she’s running alone. When she logs those miles, Karol things about all kinds of things. Her thoughts wander from work, to family, life in general, what she’s eating after her run… Karol is planning to do the Baltimore Running Festival Marathon in November.


August was marked with several high marks for Team MCVET and its members, as well as some surprises from our active duty non-res members. At the beginning of the month we welcomed Jamond to the team, who has been an tremendous and helpful addition to the roster. He’s settled in as a runner and was quick to sign up to volunteer and lend a hand at the Sneaks race just a few days after his own first run with the team. The Sneaks race was an exciting moment for the team, with several of our nonres and res members teaming up together for relay races. For newly elected team captain, Terrence, it marked his first 5+ mile run as he ran his own leg that stayed on course for an extra 3.1 miles alongside his teammate Jennifer M. “Callahan” had also teamed up with Jamond at one of the final turns to help direct race traffic to the finish line where some familiar faces from Taharka Brothers awaited with delicious sorbets and ice creams – the perfect post-race treat!

At the end of the month, the team was surprised with a visit from Ricky! Ricky was back for a couple weeks from his deployment to Kuwait and we were honored he chose to use his time off to wake up and come out and join us (although the hot August mornings in Baltimore were probably refreshing compared to the temperatures in the Middle East!) Ricky is back in the Mid-East now but it was so great to see him for a few runs. Also departing for a new station with the Navy this month was Mike Smith. We’re so sad to see him go, but we wish him all the best as he ships off to Darmstadt, Germany for 2 years. Leaving their military duties, training coach, Ross, officially marked his last day of his 8 year service in the Navy this month as well and he’ll start at Loyola University this September.

Team CP

Team CP has had a great month! We had three new guys join the team and they have been SUPER involved already. Both Michael and Henri participated in the All Hands On Deck clean-up in the Oliver neighborhood. In other wonderful news, two long time resident members George and Kani have moved into community housing. We will miss them on our daily runs, but enjoy when they can join us. The other resident guys are super excited for the Baltimore running festival and are keeping up with their training. Two alumni, Jerome and Brian are training for the marathon, so it’s been wonderful having them out there for the runs. Ben returned from South East Asia and is back to his duties of Social Coordinator. We have also had a bit of change in the coaching position. Kevin has stepped down as coach. We will miss his coaching, but are happy he’s still coming out to run. Thanks for everything! Eric Voboril has stepped into the role as co-coach with Paul and has really taken off with the job. We look forward to the running tips and the library that he has implemented. Team CP had a strong showing at Wipeout and won second place! We also got to celebrate the team’s third birthday! Thank you to the founding members that helped establish the team and are still coming out :).

Helping Up Mission’s Members of the Month: Mike and Jewel

Mike B. joined Back on My Feet just two months ago and has already accumulated 50 miles  His best moment with Back on My Feet so far was completing his first 3 miler.  While he says his greatest challenge when running is his breathing, he continues to aim high to achieve his goal of completing the half-marathon at the Baltimore Running Festival.  However, before he runs that race, he plans to run the The Sneaks Come Out at Night.  He will surely have plenty of support from his teammates.  When he runs he enjoys talking to his teammate, Misha, and thinking about all types of things, like what the day ahead of him holds.

Teammate and friend, Misha, says, “Although Mike is a beginner runner he rises to every challenge like a pro and after he catches his breath he’s smiling! That’s what makes running side by side with him so enjoyable. I’ve seen Mike make great strides in a short amount of time of working at his running. He takes it very seriously, even going to extra runs at CP on Monday nights. What first struck me about Mike is how grateful he is to have someone push him farther. He has a lot of untapped potential.”

Jewel B.joined Back on My Feet in April 2011 and has enjoyed the process of starting her day off in a positive way by getting up to run and making new friends.  During those early morning runs, she thinks about what she wants to eat after the run.  Her next race is the Baltimore Running Festival Half-Marathon.

Team leader, Rob, says, “”I think Jewel is amazing for traveling over 30 minutes each way to come to our morning runs! She has one of the longest commutes in all of Back on My Feet, but shows up with a smile and ready to run. She has also helped in bringing lots of food donations to the missions. I was lucky enough to be with Jewel on part of her recent journey in Philly where she ran 100 miles in 24 hours. She truly is an inspiration to us all!”

MCVET‘s Members of the Month: Sean and Paul

Sean O. joined Back on My Feet in May 2012 and has already accomplished a lot.  He has run 50 miles and completed a long run with Paul; the long run was his greatest accomplishment.  His greatest challenge has been remaining confident and not quitting.  When he runs, he thinks about anything and everything.  He even tells jokes on the run, earning him the nickname “Sarcastic Sean.”  In the next 3 months, he is looking forward to his first race with the team. He’ll be at The Sneaks Come Out at Night, either completing his first race or cheering on fellow BoMF teammates.

Paul D. joined Back on My Feet in July 2010 and has had tons of great moments.  Some of his best moments include; seeing his first MCVET running partner, Carlos, graduate from Baltimore County Fire Department’s Fire-Rescue Academy, the morning circle, and  for him personally, completing his first half-marathon.  Just like his fellow member of the month, Sean, Paul thinks about everything on his runs.   Although he usually tries to enjoy the moment and the company of his fellow Back on My Feet runners, his mind sometimes wanders and he thinks about his busy family life.  Next up on his racing agenda, is the Baltimore Running Festival Marathon which would be his first marathon!

In June, Back on My Feet Baltimore got to showcase our spirit at the Baltimore 10 Miler! Not only did we have a huge crew of runners, but we had the most spirited water stop at mile 9. It was a great day for Back on My Feet Baltimore and we look forward to this race again next year.

The 6k/30day challenge has taken place in June, which is a challenge to see if the Baltimore and Washington, DC chapters could run 6,000 miles in 30 days. Baltimore’s goal is 4,000 miles and was easily going to crush this! Over 100 people pledged for the miles run and at the end of the month Back on My Feet will have raised thousands of dollars for the local chapters. The spirit in Baltimore around this challenge has been as amazing as everything we do as a chapter!
May closed out with our alumni induction ceremony where several members of our team moved on to the next part of their journey with Back on My Feet. These members have secured jobs and stable housing and continue to move their lives forward. Even though they may not be able to come out and run very often, they are still loved by their teammates and an important part of our teams. In each of them we can see the success of Back on My Feet. At this ceremony, several members were also recognized as senior members for all of their hard work and accomplishments.

Beginning on July 2nd, two of our Baltimore teams, Baltimore Station and American Rescue Workers, will merge to form Team SoBo! On the morning of July, 2nd all Baltimore teams will come together and circle up in the Inner Harbor to launch the new team. This merger will help to strengthen the teams of South Baltimore and Back on My Feet Baltimore is very excited to have this awesome new team!
Training is about to begin for the Baltimore Running Festival, which is one of the premier events for Back on My Feet Baltimore. We will have teammates running the marathon, half marathon, marathon relay and the 5k as well volunteers at a water stop on the course. Over the next few months, dozens of teammates will train hard for this grand event.

Team Baltimore Station: June has been our last official month as team BSTAT, and what a phenomenal month it has been. We started out the first two days of the month by logging over 200 miles and seeing almost every single one of our active members in the circle… doesn’t get much better than that! We are thrilled to be on track to run 1,000 miles as a team this month, crushing our original goal and helping with the chapter’s 6k/30Day success. As for individual efforts, June saw great finishes in the Baltimore 10 Miler for Roderick, George, Len, Dana, Lissan, Kelcy, and Jessica, and our very own Fast Dan placed third place in the race! No doubt the encouragement at our BoMF water stop helped him to that finish; the stop was enthusiastically manned in part by BSTATers Eddie, Erin, Mark, Christine, Jared, Victoria, Bryan, and Sarah. We also welcomed Ervin and Kirt to our circle and are so happy to have them as new Res. As we transform into Team SoBo in July, we can’t wait to have even more new teammates. With so many people, we expect to make an even stronger showing in this year’s WipeOut! Look out, everyone, here comes SoBo!!

Helping Up Mission’s Members of the Month: Joe and Courtney

Joe M. joined Back on My Feet in February 2012 and hasn’t stopped running since, even if stopping is what he thinks about when he is running. He has accumulated 165 miles and counting since his first run. His favorite moment since joining Back on My Feet was watching his teammate and friend, Rachel, complete the Nikia Half Marathon.  Joe’s greatest challenge in running is problems with his knees, but he plans to persevere and run the Baltimore Running Festival Marathon.  He also perseveres in life as he continues to work on his sobriety.

Teammate and Friend, Rachel, says, “Joe is an all around positive, nice and kind hearted guy.  He really gets what it means to be a part of Back on My Feet.  If you are running with Joe and need to stop and walk or run less miles than usual because of an injury, Joe is right there by your side.  He says often, its about more than just the running.  But, As for the running, it’s not everyday someone finishes a race doing the rowboat (McVet 10k).”

Honey Dip, Rachel’s Dog, says, “Woof, woof, Joe rocks, he brings treats for me and runs with me every run!!  Thanks Joe.”

Courtney C. has had an incredible experience with Back on My Feet since joining in July 2011.  The best moment for Courtney with Back on My Feet was running the Baltimore Running Festival in 2011 with her teammates.  She had been running in it since 2006, but she said the first time she ran it with Back on My Feet was a completely new experience and it gave her chills.  She really enjoys her teammates’ company and enjoys getting to know them better while she runs.  If Courtney isn’t sharing laughs with her teammates while running, she sometimes likes to think about fellow teammates Rob and Phil in their superhero costumes.  Courtney says the next race on her schedule is either the Baltimore Running Festival or the Philly Marathon, but will likely sign up for something sooner.  She will surely make more incredible memories with Back on My Feet at any of her races.

Team Organizer, Meredith, says “Court’s fun loving personality is just one of the many reasons why our teammates flock towards her each morning.  She always goes out of her way to make those running with her feel comfortable and for those who don’t like to talk during a run, you’ll always be able to hear a good story from Court!  She’s a veteran of Thursday morning hills and don’t be surprised if you see her out at 4:50am to get in a few extra miles with some of our guys or cheering teammates on at non-BoMF and BoMF sponsored events.  She may have a quiet demeanor at first, but don’t let that fashionista fool you.  Fun, genuine, and compassionate are just a few words that describe Court.  She’s definitely been a great addition to our team!”

Christopher’s Place’s Members of the Month: Jordan and Katelin

Jordan H. joined Back on My Feet in March 2012 and has run over 130 miles with his team.  Of all those miles, his greatest moment with Back on My Feet was finishing the Baltimore 10-Miler.  Finishing, Jordan says, is the thing he likes to think about when running.  He says his goal for the next three months is running 5 miles every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.  He says now that he said it out loud, he has to do it!  Those miles will surely be helpful for his next race, the Sweet Air Trail Race and begins his training for the Baltimore Running Festival Marathon which he says will be his greatest challenge.

Team Leader, Jordyn, says, “Jordan always surprises me. He’s very quiet, which can be taken for being shy and reserved, but he can talk and out run you when you least expect it. He ran his first 10 miles at the 10-miler and completely crushed it! He is a great addition to the team as he leads by example.”

Katelin S. rejoined Back on My Feet in October 2011.  She had previously been a member when she was a student at Loyola University and missed the Back on My Feet Family when she graduated.  She has had many great memories with Back on My Feet but one of her favorites was circling up during the 6K/30 Day Challenge when her team had run 171 miles.  A little known fact about Katelin is her obsession with the Olympics.  The theme song even brings tears to her eyes!  You won’t see Katelin tearing up while she runs, because she believes everything is easier with a smile!  When she runs, she likes to use the time to clear her head and tells new runners to take it slow, enjoy the challenge, and just keep smiling!

Jordyn says, “Katelin is a force!  She is always smiling and happy, then you start running with her and she pushes you the WHOLE way.  Her happy nature has been great for the 6K/30 Day Challenge.  She has been encouraging and a great cheerleader for our team.  We hope she stays with us, as she is an awesome person to be around.”

MCVET’s Members of the Month: David and Mike

David C. better known as “Callahan” joined Back on My Feet in April 2012 and has already accumulated 70 miles!  His favorite moment with Back on My Feet was feeling the energy and the MCVET race.  He really enjoys the company of his teammates when he runs. His greatest challenge is fitting running into an already busy schedule.  Because of that busy schedule, he isn’t sure what his next race will be, but he does have some big goals for the next three months.  He not only wants to continue running but would like to achieve his next belt in karate.

Team Leader, Peter, says “A true athlete, Callahan, has been a wonderful and helpful addition to Team MCVET. He made an immediate impression when his very first day, he introduced himself with a bellowing “Callahan” and has continued to bring his good nature to the circle in the mornings.  Callahan has taken advantage of the runs to improve his conditioning for his karate pursuits and is quick to help out his teammates with their own running goals.  On any given morning, you might find him supporting a teammate nursing an injury walking with them, pushing the pace for the entire group at the front of the pack, or encouraging along a newer runner.  Whoever he spends his mornings with is sure to have a great time and leave for the rest of their day in brighter spirits.”

Mike S. has been a Back on My Feet member since March 2012.  Mike’s best moment was when he ran with Callahan in the MCVET race.  He says that Callahan asked him how he felt and even though he felt beat he showed a calm and collected front and knew he had to step it up to keep up with Callahan!  When he’s running, he thinks about how he needs to keep running and enjoys running longer distances with his teammates.  Keeping going will be important if he decides to do two races in one weekend!

Peter says, “I have to thank Ross for introducing Mike to Back on My Feet and Team MCVET. Althogh I’d actually crossed paths with Mike on a few occassions outside of BoMF, it wasn’t until I got to run with him in the mornings that I realized how genuine and great a guy he is. Every morning he comes out and joins us, he’s both worked on getting in better shape for Navy Spec Ops while simultaneously encouraging and picking up everyone around him. We’re so glad to have him as part of our team!”


Helping Up Mission’s Members of the Month: Ryan and Michelle

Ryan T. joined Back on My Feet and Team Helping Up in February 2012.   Since then, he has completed over 170 miles.  Out of all those miles, he enjoyed completing the Maryland Half Marathon with the team.  When he runs, he says he simply focuses on finishing that run.  Ryan says he struggles to keep his breathing in line when he runs.  His next race is the Baltimore 10 Miler which will be nice training for his first full marathon in November.

Helping Up Team Leader Rob says, “Ryan has been a welcomed addition to our team. He was quiet when he first started running with Back on My Feet, but now that he has become comfortable with the group you can always find him in the middle of our crew making his teammates laugh! He never takes himself too seriously and enjoys giving me a hard time every chance he gets! He always makes me laugh and was one of the inspirations for our first ever 5:30am HUM dance party! He’s already run 2 half marathons and has some big running goals for this year. I’m excited to see how far he will go!”

Michelle H. joined Back on My Feet in October 2010 and has had many awesome memories since joining.  She says her best memory came last Thanksgiving when everyone shared something for which they were thankful.  Michelle says she was inspired by the responses and is thankful for her team.  When she runs, she usually spends her time catching up with her teammates, but if she is racing she uses the alone time to thank God for giving her the ability to run or ask for assistance in the race.  Her next race with Back on My Feet is the Baltimore 10 Miler, but she says she will serve as a cheerleader for the races between now and then.

Rob says, “Michelle has been a great teammate from the time she joined our team. She’s consistent with her attendance and is a steady figure on the team. At the Nikia Half marathon she joined a relay team that needed one more person so that she could support two of our teammates and her enthusiasm and support were fantastic. I always enjoy seeing Michelle at our runs and the positive, supportive attitude she always brings!”

MCVET’s Members of the Month: Terrance and Sue

“Steady, committed, determined.” is the way MCVET’s Team Leader Peter describes Terrance R.   “Terrance shares his warm disposition with whomever is fortunate enough to share their run with him each and every morning. He’s been such a great addition to the team and we’re all really excited for him to run his first race with the team at the MCVET 5k over Memorial Day Weekend!”

Peter says, “Sue H. has been unbelievable addition to Team MCVET this past year. She’s been quick to offer her help and support to all of her teammates, whether it’s been by helping an alum prepare for the Marine Corps Marathon, volunteer at teammate’s community service events, lending a certain team leader interested in Chi running a book on the subject, or just being someone to share a great conversation with during a morning run. Not only has Sue been there to be a pillar of our team, but her family has become a welcome presence at morning runs and social events as well. Whether her son Jake is joining us for an early am run or her husband Frank is treating to us to his delicious pulled pork BBQ at a potluck, the team has embraced and is lucky to have her family!”

Christopher’s Place Members of the Month: Arnell and Stacey

Arnell D. joined Back on My Feet in March 2012 and has accumulated over 53 miles since his first run.  He says it’s hard to choose just one favorite moment but says that he loves reaching certain levels and sharing it with the team who has encourage him to keep reaching new levels.  Arnell says his biggest challenge is not giving up on himself and pushing himself to the limit.  His goal is to continue running no matter the mileage and enjoy the process of bonding and becoming a proud member of Back on My Feet.  On his runs, he thinks about his progress in life and how far he has come and thanks God for all of it.

Chrisopher’s Place Team Leader Jordyn says “Arnell’s nickname is the Blue Blur and he is super proud of that. Even while holding down a job, Arnell’s out there as often as he can with a laugh to push others and himself a bit further. We’ve loved the three months Arnell’s been on Team CP!

Stacey S. has loved her time with Back on My Feet since joining in November 2010.  Her best moment thus far was completing the Baltimore Marathon with her CP teammates.  When she runs, she thinks about how much she loves running and staying healthy with her super special team.  The next race on her agenda is the Baltimore 10 Miler.  Finally, she would like to tell people thinking about joining Back on My Feet to try it, because you will love it, even at 5:30 AM.

Jordyn says, “Stacey is such a motivation to so many people. She went from a beginner runner to running a marathon with Dom, an alum, and Andrea. Stacey is always available with a smile and words of encouragement. She has been great to have on the team.”

Baltimore Stations Member of the Month: Jared

Jared R. joined Back on My Feet in January 2012.  His favorite thing about Back on My Feet is the exchange of high-fives at the end of every  run because he says it is an unspoken way to say “Great effort and glad to share it with you.”  When he runs, he sometimes thinks through everything or sometimes thinks about nothing and escapes from everything.  Jared also loves to play soccer and uses running to stay in shape.  He loves any sort of competition and hates to lose.  Despite, that he wants to remind new runners that just like in life, not everything will go perfectly, but just accept the bad runs and appreciate the great runs.

Baltimore Station’s Team Leader Sarah says, “BSTAT quite simply wouldn’t be the same team without Jared on it. He is one of our absolutely constant 3-day-a-week runners, and has hardly missed a day since he joined a few months ago. Though no doubt one of the fastest BSTATers, he is often found running shorter distances, slower pace, or whatever it takes to keep any and all Res company on the roads– Jared shows up and runs not for himself, but for the team. He brings corny jokes, Orioles score reports, and occasionally marshmallows to our circle, and always keeps everyone laughing. BSTAT is lucky– and thankful– to have him!”


May was yet another momentous month for all of Back on My Feet Baltimore, highlighted by social and sporting events, two days of races and several new additions to the teams! MCVET welcomed 3 new members: Herbert, Tony and James, HUM added Tim R and Mike B to the roster and CP grew by two members as well!

In addition to all the new faces, the month started off strong with several Back on My Feeters taking the start line of the Maryland Half Marathon!  While many took on and defeated the 13.1 mile challenge, including George from CP running his very first half, several others began training for the challenging hills of next month’s Baltimore 10 Miler!

Of course, Back on My Feet isn’t all about races, running shoes and PR.  We’re always looking at other ways to kick back and have fun as well. BSTAT implemented a new tradition of Joke Wednesdays, making sure to share laughs over the Wednesday morning runs, and they also got together for BSTAT Bowling Night. It’s apparently a good thing running’s their main sport though, because only alumni Kenny M. looked like he had any shot on the PBA Tour!

BSTAT non-res and res members Roderick, as well as Team MCVET’s Ace, flashed some serious potential on the softball diamond though when the teams all got together after a Saturday run hosted by Charm City Run to do their best impression of the 1st place Baltimore Orioles!

Getting back to the running, several teammates attended an event on May 17th where Croix Sather spoke about his run across America. Croix was very gracious with his time and we enjoyed hearing him share his insights on working towards your goals.

While they may not have traversed the country, several BoMF runners did hit some equally impressive mileage goals of their own. CP’s Will earned his 175 mile shirt and is looking to crush the next level of mileage achievement, and his teammate Jerome reached 500 miles! On the west side, Eddie hit 150 miles before the month closed out as well!

On top of that big mileage accomplishment, Jerome also moved into community housing and reached alumni status! We’re all looking forward to celebrating his and other new alumni’s achievements at the end of the month’s alumni induction ceremony.

Many congratulations are also in order for the big non-res graduates! Julian A. and Gina at CP finished school this month as did Laurin, Charlotte and Jordan at Team MCVET! Julian will be going to med school in the fall and Gina is studying to take the NCLEX and work as a nurse.

As the month came to a close, all the teams looked forward to the what’s become a BoMF Memorial Day tradition. All our teams get a chance to join the staff and students from MCVET at the annual MCVET 5k and 10k races.  In our four years doing the event, it also seems to fall on what happens to be the first really hot weekend of the summer, but everyone is able to shrug off the heat and enjoy the festivities (with some brave team mates even taking on both the 5k and 10k distances back to back!) Making this occasion even more exciting this year, was the fact that the MCVET 5k marked the first race for several of res members including MCVET’s Sabrina, Terrance, Ace and Callahan. And even if they weren’t racing the course, our other MCVET teammates were providing much welcome-support to the runners, helping to serve food at the finish line, work on-course water stops and even lead the crowds in the singing of our national anthem!

It’s been a great month and all the teams are eagerly anticipating the excitement summer brings.  June will push each of us to get our miles in for the 6k30 Challenge while we finish up our training for the Baltimroe 10 Miler and begin preparing for the milestones that will be reached at the Baltimore Running Festival!

April has been an great month in Baltimore.  Nikia’s Nippy Nor’easter Half Marathon and Relay was a resounding success for all!  All of the teams ran with a great group from the National Transitional Jobs Network, a new partner with BoMF.  The Friday before Easter, the teams met at the harbor and had a city wide easter egg hunt!  The non-residents and alumni celebrated BoMF with an appreciation breakfast.  Congratulations and a big thank you to Rob C. from Team Helping Up for all his work in coordinating long runs on Saturdays.

April has been a BUSY month for Baltimore Station!  Teammates came out in full force for the Nikia Half, all with the hopes of beating Dan, Greg, and the rest of the race committee to the finish line. Eddie (with 100 miles under his belt) participated in his first Back on My Feet race by running a relay leg, and Roderick experienced BoMF spirit for the first time by joining teammates to cheer for the runners! Both Roderick and Jason started running at the end of March and really hit their strides in April, reaching 25 and 10 miles, respectively, and now two more resident members, Kurt and Al, have come on board, running their first few miles this month! And in other great news, after being sidelined by surgery, George is getting back to running again. The non-resident members have been busy running and racing too with the Cherry Blossom 10 Miler, Baltimore’s Sole of the City 10k, and even the Boston Marathon all featuring a few BSTATers. BSTAT looks forward to finishing out April with Operation Oliver and a BSTAT Bowling Night, and May promises even more excitement!

April has been awesome for Team CP with a GREAT turn out at the Nikia Half and Relay. Jerome ran his first half marathon and crushed it in an hour and a half! Plus George, James, William, and Jordan all ran legs of the relay. Even Arnell came out to cheer and join with the CP band. The non-res came out in force as well, with many running the half marathon and relays. Team Triple Threat made up of Diane A, Nikia’s mom, and Bonnie won the oldest team award. They sure looked stylish out there! Christopher’s Place’s coaches have kept the team busy this month with track workouts, timed miles, and new routes. Four of the resident members reached their capstone, which means they are job ready. Congrats to William, James, Jordan, and Arnell! In fact, Jerome, George, Robert, and Dean Michael, are all working! And Jordan just got a job as well. The non-res have been busy this month as well between a happy hour at Sticky Rice and a few people ran the Sole of the City. Special shout out to MJ for winning second in her age group. Congrats to William (res) and Kevin (non-res) as CP’s members of the month. The team is looking forward to the Oliver 5K and the Maryland Half. The team is looking forward to introducing three new members on our team: William, Daryl, and Brandon.

April was a great month for Team Helping Up Mission! A new Rez member, Joe K., joined the team and the rest of the team is strong as always! There were several teammates who closed out March by running the Nikia Half Marathon and Relay and several who are training for the MD Half Marathon in May. Helping Up hosted a few All Team Saturday runs in April, which are great because the Helping Up runners get to see members from the other teams. The team is gearing up to run the Operation Oliver 5k on Saturday, April 28th. Also, on Sunday, April 22nd, several teammates celebrated their graduations from Helping Up Mission with a great ceremony at Martin’s West. Some teammates sponsored a table and enjoyed the very emotional ceremony. Everyone is always proud of the residential member teammates not only for what they are doing when they run, but for all they are accomplishing in their lives!

Team MCVET continues to grow! This month 3 new res members (Chris, Anthony and Terrance) were welcomed to the team as well as 6 new non-res members. Fresh off some stunning performances in the relay at the Nippy Nikia Half, team members are eagerly looking forward to the Operation Oliver 5k at the end of the month. Not only will it be a first race for several of MCVET’s newer members, it’s also a chance to get to see what many of the non-res members are involved in as it benefits the 6th Branch, a veteran-led nonprofit group that several of the team’s newest teammates are involved with. The team looks forward to getting some miles in while supporting a good cause!

Christopher’s Place’s Members of the Month: William and Kevin

William P. started running with Team Christopher’s Place last February and has accumulated over 125 miles.  His favorite memory since joining Back on My Feet is his first day.  He’s so excited to be a part of something so positive.  His biggest challenge with running is “not overworking himself; he has no ʺmediumʺ speed and he LOVES running.”  He looks forward to the Operation Oliver 5k, gaining employability, and getting his license renewed.

Team Leader Jordyn says, “William always says how blessed he is to have found BoMF and the people that are involved.  I think that goes for BoMF as well.  William was excited to be on the team from day one.  He is a great partner to run with, and he runs with everyone, regardless of their speed.  He is honest and open and is a great addition to our team.”

Kevin F. started running with Back on My Feet in April 2011.  His favorite thing about Back of My Feet is “seeing the guys grow from sometimes struggling to run a mile on day one to cheering everyone else on as little as a month or two later.”  While Kevin thinks about numbers, distances, and to-do lists when running on his own, he says it’s very different when he runs with other people: “When I am running with others, I either engage in conversation or completely free my mind and enjoy the presence of the other runners’ breathing and footsteps and think about nothing.”  His favorite post-race meal is a burger.  “After my last marathon I ate a burger with a double patty at Red Robin in St. Mary’s County and I finished the whole thing plus fries!”  Kevin’s next race is the Operation Oliver 5k.

Jordyn says, “Kevin is one of our coaches, and he has done a great job in this role.  While we may not always wan to push ourselves in the morning, he’s there with a smile and encouraging words.  Sometimes he even has homemade treats for us!”

Helping Up Mission’s Members of the Month: Frank and Michelle

Since December 2011, Frank P. has run over 225 miles with Team Helping Up.  His most recent 13.1 at the Nikia Half Marathon were his favorite.  “When I finished I looked down and saw my little girl there; it was an amazing experience.”  When he’s running, he prefers to talk to whomever he’s running with than think about anything in particular.  Frank’s biggest challenge with running is staying injury-free.  He wants to push himself and run harder, but wants to be sure that he’s strong enough first.  He’s looking forward to the Operation Olive 5k.

Helping Up Mission’s Team Leader, Rob says, ʺFrank has really pushed himself since he joined the team and had an amazing first half marathon last month!  Frank was chosen by his teammates to be Team Captain and has stepped up to the challenge to become a great leader on our team.  Even though Frank is a very fast runner, he takes time to run with as many different teammates as he can…and that’s really what BoMF is all about.  Frank will have many more great successes in his life, not just with running, but with anything he wants to achieve!ʺ

Rob says, ʺMichelle H. has been a great teammate from the time she joined our team.  She’s consistent with her attendance and is a steady figure on the team.  At the Nikia Half marathon she joined a relay team that needed one more person so that she could support two of our teammates and her enthusiasm and support were fantastic.  I always enjoy seeing Michelle at our runs and the positive, supportive attitude she always brings!ʺ

MCVET’s Members of the Month: “Ace” and Ross

Charles “Ace” S. has run 12 miles since joining Back on My Feet in March.  During his first week with the team, all of the Baltimore teams gathered at MCVET for a Back on My Feet 3rd birthday run.  “What a way to get started with my first week on the team,” “Ace” has said.  “Ace” has been getting over an injury.  He says, “It’s hard coming out and knowing I need to sit out on the run while I’m waiting on my knee appointment.”  Although he wants to push himself, he knows that the longer miles will have to wait until after his knee pain reduces.  In the meantime, he’s excited for supporting 6th Branch at the Operation Oliver 5k!

Abby, MCVET’s Non-Res Coordinator says, “Ace is such a wonderful addition to the circle. Despite his injury he is still out each morning with a great smile getting the rest of us amped up for our morning run. His enthusiasm is infectious and much appreciated. We are so lucky to have him and look forward to him overcoming his knee injury so he can join in for more miles…and smiles.”

Ross L. has been running with Team MCVET since the first week of March 2012.  Ross recounts his first few times running with the team: “My first day running with BoMF was on a Friday, and as such, my attitude was great coming to the end of the week. The next Monday, however, waking up for work and thinking about the laundry list of things waiting for me had me in a slump as I prepared to head off for my run. When I arrived at MCVET, in my slightly grumpy/half asleep manner, no less than 15 people approached me within 5 minutes of arrival – all brandishing a smile that, at 5:30 a.m., was completely foreign to me. The contagious uplifting morale of everyone standing around in the circle that morning gave me chills as I got on the train and headed in to work that day – and suddenly the laundry list didn’t seem very long after all.”  His next race will be the Operation Oliver 5k on April 28th where Ross hopes to run a 21:00 or better–dang that’s fast!

Mitch, MCVET’s Race Coordinator says, “Ross is a gung-ho, positive, happy eager-beaver who makes every run fast and fun.  You can quote me on that!”

March was a busy month for all of the Back on My Feet teams in Baltimore.  With the chapter’s third birthday celebrations and Nikia’s Nippy Nor’easter Half-Marathon and Relay, American Rescue Workers, Baltimore Station, Christopher’s Place, Helping Up Mission, and MCVET teammates got to see each other several times.

March was also a month of celebrating at Team Christopher’s Place.  Res members Brian and Robert found employment and Sheldon was accepted into a culinary arts program.  On Saturday March 17th, eight non-res members: Kayla, Ben, Nicole, Chris, Kieran, Jeanne, Sam, and Claire all ran in the DC Rock n Roll marathon and half-marathon.  Sarah, the team’s non-residential member coordinator, got a big group of people to go down and spectate.  The CP band was in force!  Again, Eric V. pulled through with an awesome rendition of Happy Birthday for the birthday run on March 16th.  One new guy, Arnell, joined the team and he is ready to run!  Everyone at Team CP is just gearing up for the half and relay and continuing the training for the Maryland Half.  Many of the res guys are running various legs of the relays, so there’s going to be a strong showing!

Because Team Helping Up has such a large team, no new teammates started this month.  The team continued to train for the Nikia Half Marathon and the Maryland Half Marathon.  The team is so excited for the Nikia Half Marathon and several teammates will be participating in the half marathon or the relay, a few of whom are running their first half marathon!  The Saturday circles are growing and as the weather gets nicer, even more teammates are expected to return to the long weekend runs.  On Saturday, March 24th, teammate Charmaine was gracious enough to host the team at her house for a showing of the movie “Spirit of the Marathon.”  Definitely a fun time and an inspirational movie!

March of 2012 has been one of the most exciting months in Team MCVET’s last 3 years.  The month kicked off when 6 new res members were oriented and welcomed to the team: Ace, Callahan, Roni, Sabrina, Prince and Lawrence who’ve brought a contagious sense of energy and excitement to the morning circle.  The very same week, they ran their first mile with the team, MCVET hosted all of BoMF for another 1 mile run to commemorate the third anniversary of BoMF Baltimore’s first run.  It was an awesome morning to be a part of and so many old faces, including several alums, came out as the teams all took to the streets of Baltimore that morning.  Then 2 weeks later, another important date was marked with a one mile run. Teammate Sean who was struck by a car in July came out to join the team for his very first run since his accident. It was a true testament to his courage and resolve in dedicating himself to his rehabilitation and recovery since that tragic evening and everyone was so proud to be there for him. In addition to those big events, the team has welcomed many new non-res members including Ross, Kimberly, Mike, and Rich and Dave from the 6th Branch, a veteran organization that will be hosting BoMF Baltimore at the Op Oliver 5k next month! And speaking of races, many of MCVET teammates will run their very first at the Nikia Half Marathon & Relay at the end of the month!