Students train for the ‘Toughest Half in Texas’

By Kennedy Dendy | Broadcast Reporter

The 17th annual Bearathon, a fundraising effort by Student Foundation, is taking place this Saturday.

Sugar Land senior Lauren Emiliani and Weatherford senior Emma Beaird were named co-directors of the Bearathon a year ago and have since been planning every detail of the race from emergency action plans to the logistics.

“The Bearathon is a half-marathon and a 6K that we put on annually to raise money for Student Foundation scholarships,” Beaird said. “Each year we get to give out about 90 scholarships to students, who are both merit and need-based at Baylor. We like to say that this is the ‘Toughest Half Marathon in Texas.’ Not only do you have your scenic run through Baylor, but you have a pretty scenic and pretty tough run through the hills of Cameron Park.”

The 13.1 mile long race can be a challenge both physically and mentally, but Emiliani said the most important piece of advice is to drink water throughout the race.

“We have fifteen water stations along the route, so there are plenty of opportunities to get water,” Emiliani said. “That’s the biggest piece of advice and thing I think people should know is that there is plenty of water. Grab what you need, and keep going. There is going to be plenty of people there cheering on the whole way.”

Basking Ridge, N.J.. junior Christina Muñoz ran the Bearathon for the first time last year. She has been preparing for this year’s race since then and even planned her spring semester classes around her training plan.

“I run four days per week,” Muñoz said. “I run Monday, Wednesday, Fridays and Saturdays. So my Monday, Wednesday and Fridays are a little bit shorter runs —probably not above four miles. Saturdays are my long runs.”

Muñoz said she sticks to a strict meal prep plan to help prepare for Saturday’s race.

“For race week, I definitely always meal prep,” Muñoz said. “Last year I definitely meal prepped a lot of carbs, a lot of pasta, a lot of rice, pasta salad and lots of chicken. I love fruits, so a lot of berries is what I will do as well.”

Katy junior Chioma Anyanti will be running the Bearathon for the first time this year.

“I’ve found an online planning guide for beginners that I’ve been able to use,” Anyanti said. “It has a lot of workouts that you can do throughout the week.

She said that the Bearathon is a way to pursue a goal of hers and knows that she will walk away feeling accomplished.

“I feel like pushing yourself and wanting to accomplish something and reach a goal is the biggest thing,” Anyanti said. “Knowing that you’re going to reach that goal and complete something in the end is what motivates me.”

“One thing that Student Foundation hopes is to let the people who are participating in the Bearathon know and understand that this is a fun event, and it is still going toward a really great cause,” Emiliani said. “It also raises scholarship money for students. We just want people to get to know Waco more and [learn] more about the community.”

The Bearathon begins at 8 a.m. and will start and finish at McLane Stadium. Prizes will be awarded, and the money raised goes toward scholarships for Baylor Students. Information about weather updates or delays can be found on the Bearathon’s website.