Community Profile: Tom Spreacker

Joseph Maley Foundation Board member Tom Spreacker discusses his decision to participate in this year’s Run, Walk, Roll following a surgery that gave him a new focus on his health.

Why have you decided to run this year’s event, following a recent surgery?

After having a stint to resolve a 99% blockage in my heart,  I really felt that I was given a second chance at taking care of myself and being here for my family and friends. I began by attending cardiac rehabilitation to get me started with working out and eating healthy. The timing of this year’s Run, Walk, Roll provided me a target for a goal. Running and finishing the 5K race will prove that I have made significant progress in achieving my goals.

When did you start running?

I started running three days a week in May as part of my cardiac rehab. I am now running six days a week on my own as I increase my distance and pace preparing for the 5K.

To you, how do race events like the Run, Walk, Roll fit into a healthy and active lifestyle?

I have had a passion for the Joseph Maley Foundation for many years, and the Run, Walk, Roll gives me a way to align that passion with my new focus on health and wellness. I am able to support both with the event!

Living a physically fit life is a challenge to a lot of people – do you think events like the Run, Walk, Roll help people on their journeys to fit and active lifestyles?

Definitely. The fact that the Run, Walk, Roll focuses not only on running but walking and rolling makes it inclusive for everyone regardless of their abilities. I would likely not run a 5K if I felt excluded due to where I am on my health journey. I know my journey to better health is just starting, so I will be able to advance over the upcoming years in future races. I guess the Run, Walk, Roll is another example of the Joseph Maley Foundation supporting people of all abilities!

As a member of the Joseph Maley Foundation Board of Directors, what impact does the race hold for you?

Beyond the much-needed funds that the Run, Walk, Roll brings in, I love to watch the run2gether crews. The smiles on everyone’s face defines the mission of the Foundation.  It inspires me to do more.

How many Run, Walk, Roll events have you participated in? What’s your favorite memory of the race?

I have volunteered for several years, but have never participated. Watching athletes finish the race is always my favorite part; it means so much to them beyond a 5K.

Do you have any goals for the 2018 Run, Walk, Roll?

Beyond finishing? I would like to work on a sub 15:00/mile pace to finish in less than 45 minutes.  But finishing will be a victory unto itself.

What does the Run, Walk, Roll mean to you?

Of all of the events that the Joseph Maley Foundation does to support our mission, “serving children of all abilities,” the Run, Walk, Roll provides the most visibility to those who may not know what we do. I love it.

Final Thoughts?

I have come to realize that my health is a precious gift. I hope to encourage others to take time out of our busy days to be good stewards of that gift.

Interviewed by:

Gino Maley

Loyola University Chicago

Joseph Maley Foundation Board of Directors