Some people exercise for fun, some to stay young and some to feel better about eating that fourth taco.
But Troy Alderman David Norman recently hit the track for another purpose: awareness.
May 24, while most Lincoln County residents were preparing for the long weekend, Norman was beginning a 24-hour run to raise awareness of drug addiction and the ways that it can tear communities and families apart.
Troy residents may recognize Norman as the guy who, on various holidays – and sometimes just because he feels like it – runs through town with a big American flag.
Norman states that these runs really lift spirits and boost morale.
“One of the reasons I wanted to do this was because we lost our [band’s] drummer, Tim Bishop, to a heroine overdose back on October 27 of last year,” Norman said before he started his run. “That really hit hard. I think that this will help me get closure.”
Norman said that he’s seen so many people throw away talent because of addictions and that he wants to do something about it through his running.
Norman has also been a part of a different kind of race to make a change in his community: an aldermanic race.
“I ran for alderman to try to make a difference, somehow, someway,” Norman said.
Most people, when preparing for 24 hours of constant exercise, would prepare by steadfastly sticking to a specific diet, would stay away from working, and might even adjust their sleep schedule but for Norman, it’s just another day.
“I eat while I’m running. I don’t eat anything out of the ordinary that I wouldn’t eat during the week. I’ve tried that, but it doesn’t work for me. I love my snacks,” Norman said. He said he is the same way with hydration. Norman said his retirement show from his band career will be June 27 at FUBAR.
Norman predicted that he would cover 75-80 miles during the 24 hours, and came in right at 75 miles at the end.
“June 6 will be my 33 anniversary of running. It’s kind of an addiction and I think people with those problems could relate.” Norman said. “In the last five years, training for my 50 milers, I have set miles I want to get per week. Last year I hit 2,100 miles and this year I’ll probably hit 2,000.” Norman said he encounters a lot of new runners and they ask him for running advice and his number one message to them is that the hardest part is getting out the door. Once they can do that, the rest is easy.
The 24 hour run/walk-a-thon took place at the track behind Main Street Elementary School at Clonts Field.
Norman is hoping that the 24-hour run will become an annual event.
“The people that I’m going to meet during the 24 hours and the stories that they will tell that we can all share together is what I’m really looking forward to,” Norman said. More information about running events in Troy can be found on the Troy Running Club’s Facebook page at www.facebook.com/TroyRunningClub.