I’m on location once again today, talking with another one of my Team in Training teammates during Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend.
David Mutnick has been running most of his life, but it has only been in the past few years that he found his “why” for running.
I am looking forward to going a few easy miles with David Mutnick today.
Unique Vantage Point
David Mutnick has been around runners for as long as he can remember.
David’s father owned a sneaker store in Long Island, New York during most of his childhood.
The family business held fond memories for David.
Each year during the NYC marathon, his father made buses available from the store to transport runners.
David’s earliest memories include the fun chaos on marathon day and also the pasta dinner with athletes the evening before.
Though David was surrounded by runners, he didn’t gravitate to the sport until he was an adult.
David was always active and involved in sports, but his passion was soccer.
Running Became Personal
As an adult David occasionally participated in races as a way to get in shape but never ran consistently.
It was during 2012 that David’s world was turned upside down.
His father was diagnosed with Lymphoma.
Upon hearing the news, David went out for a run to clear his head.
When he got back he knew exactly what he had to do.
David had made up his mind that he would run a race while raising money for his dad.
He promptly signed up for Team in Training and set his sights on running the Disney half marathon.
Double The Distance, Double The Money
David successfully completed his first half marathon with his father waiting for him at the finish.
There was no question in David’s mind that he would continue fundraising for Team in Training.
David had zero plans to run a marathon, but a friendly wager from a family member changed all that.
His relative offered to double whatever he raised if he committed to running a marathon.
David didn’t see this as a choice and he immediately signed up for his first full.
He crossed the finish line of the Disney Marathon with $2,400 extra dollars to add to the total he raised.
Disney Was The Only Choice
David chose to run primarily Disney races because in his mind there were no other options.
He had loved Disney since childhood and nothing seemed better than running through the parks for his first race.
Disney kept him coming back every year because the organization was top notch and Team in Training consistently had a large group.
In recent years David’s entire family has joined him and participated in shorter races.
The races have evolved over the years for David and now include more fun along the course.
With some strategy and planning, David and his teammates are able to include stops for rides and meeting characters all while indulging in food and beverages.
All the attention they get along the course only serves to raise more awareness for the cause so close to their hearts.
From The Heart
If there is one thing that David has learned from all of his fundraisings over the years it’s to tell a story, yours or someone else’s.
David’s personal story about his father’s own fight against cancer gave David a springboard of sorts to work from.
Even with having a personal connection, it was ultimately up to David to choose how to best reach his goals.
The hardest part of fundraising for David was often the simplest part as well, which is to ask.
He has found that the majority of people will gladly donate to his cause.
David’s suggestions for anyone fundraising are:
- Have a good system in place, whether that be calling, sending out emails, or another option.
- Be personal and share stories.
- Send updates during fundraising and after. Donors enjoy hearing the details of where and how their money helped.
The Future Is Wide Open
Running has opened many doors for David and has helped to shape who he has become.
Aside from all the Disney races he has completed, David has also run many other big races.
David has found that he prefers big cities with large crowds around him.
Running has been a great way to sightsee and experience what makes each neighborhood unique.
Eventually, David aspires to run each of the marathon majors and earn his six stars.
David has experienced many ups and downs over the years with running.
Through it all, he gained a greater sense of determination and will to keep going when things get tough.
Mentioned In This Episode:
Stay connected with David Mutnick by visiting and/or donating to his Team in Training Page.
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