V On the Street

How Far Would You Go?

I don’t know about you, but when I run it’s usually because I’m working toward a fitness goal (or so I can enjoy a big bowl of chocolate ice cream).  I’m not talking about any crazy fitness goals; I just like to stay in shape.  I have trained for a half marathon but that’s as far as it goes, never have I even considered being able to complete an Ironman race.

For Tom Knoll, my Tom Knollworkouts would probably be a joke.

Knoll, who is now 79 years old, was one of only 12 to finish the first Ironman race in Hawaii.  That means Knoll swam 2.4 miles, biked 112 miles and ran 26.2 miles — all in one day.  Sounds more than impressive to me, but for Knoll it wasn’t enough.

These days, Knoll is running across the country — from New Orleans to Canada — to raise money for several well-known charities, including The V Foundation.  This will be his third cross-country trip to raise money for causes ranging from curing cancer to supporting injured Marines.

Knoll’s love for running began when he was serving as a Marine in 1974.  At first, Knoll ran with friends during their lunch break but he quickly realized that his hobby was a great way to raise money for the causes he’s passionate about.  He recently hit the $1 million mark in his fundraising quests and doesn’t seem to be slowing down.

Knoll just started his trip from Louisiana to Canada on May 28 and says he’ll cross the finish line on July 31.  I think it’s safe to say Knoll can eat whatever he wants, but it’s even safer to say that his story is one of inspiration.  Without people like Tom Knoll, The V Foundation wouldn’t be able to reach its ultimate goal of helping find a cure for cancer.