Nara: Put One Foot after the Other

It all started off with my oldest brother, Yael. He ran the 2016 LA Marathon and it was unbelievable. At the time I was a 6th grader and I still hadn’t even entered middle school. My parents were always praising him and I found it incredible that my oldest brother had ran 26.2 miles. By the time I entered middle school, I had gained weight and decided it was time for a change. One morning at school, I had heard an announcement about joining the school SRLA team. As soon as I heard it, I knew that change was going to commence. I followed the instructions and met up with a teacher regarding the school SRLA team.

The dedication to the team was actually really difficult and challenging. I had to wake up early on Saturday mornings and I had to stay after school to attend practices. The start of practice was most challenging for me because I was overweight and I didn’t have a strong mentality. I focused on how fast the people around me were and how tired I was. I never focused on my own self development or progress. I was such a downer and pessimist, I was always hard on myself.

With time, I started to pull myself together. I had teachers, coaches, classmates, friends, family, and my fellow SRLA team members supporting me. They were there to motivate me and encourage me to keep running. I eventually let go of all the negativity and focused on myself. I compared my running time and pace to the beginning of training. I had never seen so much improvement in myself. Just the simple things kept me going. I kept in mind all the benefits I was gaining and all the wonderful, beautiful events I was experiencing.

As I woke up on those early morning practices and marathon races, I always kept in mind what I was once told by an elder lady who ran a marathon race, “Just remember to put one foot after the other. As long as you keep it up, you’re one step closer to accomplishing victory at that finish line.” It was all mental, I had to believe in myself and keep pushing myself to get closer to accomplishing my goals. If my oldest brother could run 26.2 miles, then so could I. There’s nothing that could take away my determination and will to run. The idea of running a marathon was so exhilarating.

SRLA has really changed my outlook and how I view myself, it has made me become a mentally prepared person who is ready to take on any obstacles that came across my path. I had my family waiting for me across that finish line, people who believed in me and fully supported me as best as they could. They motivated me to cross that finish line and they also motivated me to be just like them, an encouraging and strong minded person who supports their beliefs.

To support Nara and teammates on their journey next year, make a donation today. To share your SRLA story, email Naomi at