This must be the place: One hundred years from this day, will the people still feel this way

It was somewhere around the the second mile of my New Year’s Eve jog that I realized that day marked exactly five years since I began my running streak. 

Freedom on foot: Cashiers man shares trail running passion through guide company

These days, Brendon Voelker’s life revolves around running, but eight years ago the Texas native was still struggling to complete his first mile.   

He was overweight and out of shape back then, and while he could happily spend a day riding around on his road bike, running a mile was out of the question. But after a weight loss journey that left him 80 pounds lighter, Voelker made it a personal goal to get that first mile under his belt. By the end of 2013, he’d completed a nonstop 5K for the first time, and the distances ballooned from there. 

This must be the place: It was the work of the quiet mountains, this torrent of purity at my feet

Walking out of my apartment this past Tuesday, the morning sun illuminated the mud plastered all over the side of my ole Toyota Tacoma. It was time to edit and put out the newspaper, but the only thing I could think about was when I could once again escape into the wildness. 

This must be the place: Roads that we abandon and others that we take

When I lace up my running shoes lately, I’ve found that I usually need to add a windbreaker on top of my normal running attire. It’s that time of year again, my favorite spot on the calendar. The air is colder, the leaves have fallen, and yet the sun’s rays still warm the face — that calm before the storm of holidays and family obligations. 

Junaluska Elementary works to empower male students

Female empowerment is all the rage right now. From school-age programs like Girls on the Run to the #MeToo movement, the advocacy for equal rights and fem-respect is paramount. As a woman, I’m happy to see our gender being supported and heard. 

This must be the place: Where the winds hit heavy on the borderline

It’s like getting hit in the face with a frying pan.

Stepping out of my parents’ farmhouse in Upstate New York this past week, the outside temperature was 5 below zero with a wind chill hovering around minus 20 or so. I had three layers of shirts on with running tights and other winter attire. 

Running toward her goals: Catamount student succeeds with Heart & Sole program

Born with cerebral palsy, Jaylyn Logan’s nana Marvellia Ross knew that her granddaughter’s life would have limitations. However, a new program at the Catamount School has shown them that just about anything is possible when you push yourself and have others rooting for you.

Jaylyn amazed her teammates, her family and herself in December when she not only completed her first 5K race but even ran to the finish line. 

Mountains at a running pace

Andrew Shepherd has only been a runner for about two years. But when he took up the hobby, he was after more than a casual 5K. 

Bones from coast to coast: Black Mountain runner completes 1,175-mile run while battling cancer

Most people would not see a diagnosis of incurable cancer as an invitation to run 1,175 miles. But Kenny Capps is not most people. 

“It’s a cancer that requires you to say on top of it,” he said. “Moving in whatever way you can, that’s invaluable to being able to live with it. Because you can live with it. I know it’s terminal, but so is life. They don’t have a cure for that either.”

Finding inspiration in the backwoods of WNC

Certain memories or events in life stand out as paramount, like a utopian experience that seems more like a movie than reality. This past weekend was one of those for me. Over 24 hours spent running in the backwoods of Western North Carolina bolstered my faith in humanity.

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