Canton Marathon | Laura Rosenthal

More than 6,000 registered participants are expected for the inaugural Canton Marathon on June 17. More than 500 already have signed up to run all 26.2 miles. We asked 26 of those runners to tell us about themselves— and why they chose to run the marathon in Canton. Be prepared to be inspired.

26 runners for 26 miles

More than 6,000 registered participants are expected for the inaugural Canton Marathon on June 17. More than 500 already have signed up to run all 26.2 miles. We asked 26 of those runners to tell us about themselves— and why they chose to run the marathon in Canton. Be prepared to be inspired.

Age: 30

Residence: Columbus

Occupation: Stay-at-home mom.

How long have you been running? I started running in 2010. My dad, David Weber, had caught the marathon bug and was traveling the goal to run around the country with marathon in all 50 states. He convinced me that I could do it and acted as my mentor throughout my training. On race day, he ran with me every step of the way. It’s a day I’ll never forget.

Have you ever completed a marathon before? Yes, in Wilmington Del.

Do you listen to music while you run? Sometimes I listen to music and sometimes I would rather be alone with my thoughts. My favorite song to run to is Florence and the Machine’s “The Dog Days Are Over.” The chorus reminds me of my inspiration to run.

What made you sign up for the Canton Marathon? A year and a half after the marathon I ran with my dad, we lost him to cancer. After his death, my brother and I decided we would finish my dad’s quest to run a marathon in all 50 states. Canton is special for us though. Canton would have been his hometown race. Our whole family plans to be involved in some way and we are planning on making this a yearly tradition to honor his memory.

Are you following a specific running program? I’m running a marathon in Nashville just six weeks before the Canton Marathon, so to train for both I’ve blended a couple training programs. I am using the Non-Runner’s Marathon Trainer, Four Months to a Four Hour Marathon and www.halhigdon.com.

What is your motivation? Growing up, my father was my teacher and mentor. He always offered me a stable and grounded perspective on life. As I became an adult, he also became my friend. Running has given me a medium for which I can feel connected with him. It’s also given me the time to reflect on the good times we had together as a family. Training for a marathon is extremely mentally taxing, but this time around it has been very emotional. I try to sort out my emotions and experiences by writing about them in my blog www.donthitthewall.com. I am motivated by the memory of my father and the desire to pay tribute to the legacy that he has left behind.

What kind of shoes do you wear? I love my Voltage Cherry Nikes!