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Runner’s Rapport: Camaraderie is Key to this Couple’s Sprinting Success

Monday, September 15, 2014

roberts outside revisedWhen facing new and exciting challenges, the open road can seem daunting. But as Joggin’ for the Noggin 5k runners Kimberly and Kevin Roberts know, being surrounded by supportive people can unlock the strength, courage and determination that allows us to soar to unimaginable heights.

This Lakeland couple knows that this adage applies both to conquering personal goals and to attaining the higher education that enables dreams and futures to blossom.

Kimberly and Kevin were bitten by the Joggin’ bug from the first time they participated.

“The costumes were a big draw the first year. We were very, very excited about that. We had already done some Disney races, so we actually wore the same costumes. So we were thrilled to get to do it again,” said Kimberly.

Their enthusiasm culminated in a win for both when they were selected for prizes for their costumes.

“We both won for the most difficult costumes to run in,” said Kimberly, laughing. “We were dressed as the Zombie Bride and Groom, with a full wedding dress and suit.”

This event provided an opportunity to revel in camaraderie with others who share the pair’s love of running, jogging, and walking–and it also allowed them to help Polk State College students dash towards their educational finish lines. The rush keeps the couple racing back to the exciting event for more, year after year.

The run has become a family affair for the Roberts. Their daughter and her husband have joined them for the past two years, and now their son–a Polk State College student– and his fiancée will be joining them this year.

Kimberly and Kevin have made running a way of life, sprinting four to six times a week, loving every moment of it.

But it wasn’t always that way. Kimberly confessed that she was less than thrilled with running at first.

“I didn’t really love it when I started out. In fact, I didn’t like it at all,” she said. “I started running in March of 2005. I did one race, figured it’s over and done, and never wanted to do it again.”

“And then in November of that year, I tried it again, and I haven’t really stopped since then, other than a few minor injuries here or there. Regularly every week, and enjoying every second of it!”

Kimberly found that the encouragement of her husband, Kevin, and community members with the same goals, were the keys to her change of heart. “Kevin has always been extremely supportive of my running,” she said.

Kevin, already an experienced runner, spurred her on with his contagious enthusiasm and interest in her new activity, and eventually joined her on all her running pursuits.

“Now having my husband involved and the kids, and being so active in the Lakeland runner’s club, and with all of our friends – I love the camaraderie, the friendship—I love pushing each other to achieve the goal, trying to get to the next race!” she said.

Knowing that it was the encouragement of others that helped her, Kimberly always supports the goals of those embarking on running.

“Don’t second-guess yourself. Don’t think you’re not capable. You’re capable of way more than you think you are. Just get up every morning with the mind-set that I can do this, and I’m going to do this!”

After savoring the fun and festivities of Joggin’ for two years, Kimberly and Kevin and their family are signed up and raring to go for a third.

“It’s one of the most enjoyable races we’ve ever been to, and such a great cause — we just love it! We love the wonderful costumes, the zombies on the course, the great food and entertainment, the dancing. We can’t wait to do it every year. We’re really looking forward to it,” said Kimberly.

Please join the Roberts family and many more of your community members on Friday, October 24, 2014 for this joyous occasion that you won’t want to miss!

To register, please click here for printable registration form, complete and bring it with you to the event!

— Race Starts – 6:30pm
— Monster Mash and Awards – immediately following race until 8:00pm.

Description: The 3rd Annual Joggin’ for the Noggin! 5k presented by Regal Automotive Group benefits Polk State College students and promises to be a fun and SCARY, Halloween themed race – because Polk County would be a SCARY place without Polk State. Run, jog, walk – this 3.1 mile race or 1 mile walk includes gravel road, grass and a trek on the Fort Fraser Trail. This race will be chip timed and awards will be presented to the top 3 in standard 5-year age groups, overall male and female, masters and grand masters. Runners are encouraged to wear costumes. Be prepared to be SCARED. The run will feature zombies on the trail to add pep to your steps. This is a family friendly race and will include spooky and fun activities for all ages.  Great food for race participants.  Adult and children’s costume contest will take place during the Monster Mash. Proceeds from Joggin’ for the Noggin! 5k will benefit student scholarships and programs on the Lakeland campus.