One Man’s Road to 100

If you see a runner trotting around West Cary on Oct. 7, there’s a chance he may have been at it for the past 18 hours.

No, that’s not a typo. John Sisler will depart his Cary home at 4 p.m. Saturday afternoon and run 100 miles without stopping. The 42-year-old software consultant expects the run will take between 18 and 20 hours.

Why? And how? (Am I reading your mind here?)

When Sisler was 39, he was playing a game of tag with his young son, Jack. Unable to keep up, he stopped and hunched over, tired. “I thought there’s really no excuse for someone who’s not even 40 to be able to run around,” he realized. “If I’m tired now, how am I going to run around with his kids?”

Vowing to get active, he took up running. “I started with half a loop of my neighborhood and had to walk the rest,” he said. Gradually adding more distance and reading books by long-distance runners, he one day set his mind to the remarkable goal of running 100 miles.

Sisler runs in “barefoot” Vibram FiveFinger shoes.

A 50-mile training run on Sept. 1. is the furthest he has ever run to date, but he’s followed a scripted program of about 1,500 miles that promises to prepare him for his goal. He even trained through a broken wrist and ribs.

The Road to 100, as he has dubbed his journey, aims to draw attention to the mounting problem of childhood obesity. “American youth have become so unhealthy that ‘the baby-boomers may outlive their kids,’” Sisler cites on his fundraising page. 

Sisler has partnered with Karno Kids, an organization that aims to help children maintain active lifestyles in order to reverse the alarming trend toward obesity.

There are several ways you can help Sisler meet his goals.

Run for fun on Oct. 7: About 10 states will have grassroots fun runs this year in honor of the Road to 100. Sisler intends to meet interested Caryites at the Carpenter Village green to do “a lap or two” —after completing his 100 miles! The informal fun run will be held from 9 to 11 a.m. Oct. 7. Anyone interested can meet at the Carpenter Village gazebo.

Sisler makes a point to stay active with his 9-year-old son, Jack.

If you can’t make the fun run, “Just run and think of Karno Kids,” Sisler said. “Run down your driveway and back.” It’s the thought that counts.

Make healthy decisions as a family: Learn a little more about nutrition and make a healthy meal for your kids. Take them out for an extra romp around the yard. Anything that helps the next generation be a little more alive is a step in the right direction.  

Follow his journey: Stay up to date with his progress on his Facebook page. Sisler will also be at Omega Sports in Park West Village in Morrisville this Saturday, Sept. 29, from noon to 5 p.m. with information on his journey.

Donate: Support Karno Kids via Sisler’s fundraising page.

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