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Brian Schneider, Fargo, Published May 25 2013

Letter: It’s about heart, most of all

There’s nothing more rewarding than being part of a city of more than 100,000 people who come together each year for the Fargo Marathon and make it as popular as a national holiday. Not only is the marathon about stamina and athleticism, it’s about commitment, determination, teamwork, accomplishment and, most of all, heart.

I’ve been watching the slide show of the pictures taken during the Fargo Marathon, and I have been deeply moved and motivated by the pictures of people who are utterly exhausted and strained as they cross the finish line but have smiles on their faces with complete satisfaction of their great accomplishment.

I saw pictures of couples meeting at the finish line and embracing each other the same way couples do when our troops arrive home at the airport after deployment. And I saw pictures of people in wheelchairs accomplishing the same thing as people on their feet.

Congratulations to everyone for their hard-earned finish. There’s no doubt that the participants in the Fargo Marathon have put in many hours of training and probably have overcome many obstacles such as injury, sickness and time commitments.

I am deeply motivated by these participants because I am on a journey myself. I have signed up for football in the fall at Presentation College and after seven years away from the sport, or any sport for that matter, I have a lot of work ahead of me: two workouts a day, long hours at work, a rising food bill and a greater focus than I have ever had. My teammates and probably most of my opponents will be young and probably played football for the past four years.

As an older person entering into this type of atmosphere, I hope that I can stay focused enough and work hard enough to become a role model for my younger teammates. Hopefully they will see how hard I have to work to be successful at something I love, and they can take that home with them as they continue their journey through college. This will be my second time through.

The participants of the Fargo Marathon have motivated me and aimed my focus at my future goals in college football the same way that I hope to motivate my future teammates in our journey through college and into the workforce of our future generations.