Marathoner finds fulfillment in purpose, not finish

Published: Tuesday, July 17 2012 9:00 p.m. MDT

Curran was prescribed ProAir HFA, and she said it was one of the most critical tools she had to continue.

"That keeps me running," she said of the medication. "I want people to know that this is a very treatable disease, that it doesn't have to get in the way of your goals or your dreams."

She is a member of the board of Allergy and Asthma Network Mothers of Asthmatics and hopes to not just raise money and enjoy her favorite sport, but to raise awareness of symptoms of asthma and the options available post-diagnosis.

Curran started running because she was like most moms — desperate for a few minutes of peace.

"I was in my late 20s and I had three children under five," she said. "I started, literally, just to get out of the house for some fresh air, some peace and quiet and to be alone — even if it was for 20 or 30 minutes. I was painfully slow, but it was the easiest thing for me to do was to buy a pair of running shoes and head out the door."

But her hobby took on new significance after the tragedy of Sept. 11, 2001.

"We live right by the Pentagon," she said. "We saw the plane going up (the freeway), and thought, 'That's odd.' And then I sat on the porch with my girls, watching the smoke come from the Pentagon, waiting for my husband to ride his bike home. I started thinking life is really short and really precarious. You have to do the things you want to do, and I thought it was time for me to start doing something. Running marathons seemed like something."

After 48 marathons, she finds running the perfect platform to help those less fortunate, to enhance her own health and inspire those who may face challenges like asthma.

"It's conquering fear," she said. "Hearing that I had EIB scared me. Running a marathon is about not letting fears get in your way, not letting roadblocks get in your way. Just keep at it."

Curran chose the charities she donates to with her daughters. They include a group that provides books to low-income families and schools, Girls on the Run (which teaches girls the benefits of a healthy lifestyle), Community Lodging (which helps homeless families to find financial independence).

"All of the programs benefit children and families," she said. "I'm proud to be able to make an impact in my community and to help change lives."

email: adonaldson@desnews.com

twitter: adonsports

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