WARSAW — A runner participating in part of the cross-country MS Run the US is expected to pass through Kosciusko County Wednesday as she promotes a better understanding of Multiple Sclerosis.
Courtney Kruse, 38, of Byram Township, New Jersey, is running a 150-mile segment in six days from Valparaiso to Van Wert, Ohio, in the Ultra Relay, stretching 3,260 miles.
Each runner runs an average of 160 miles in six days and commits to fundraising $10,000 for the cause.
Kruse said Monday night that she’s been doing long-distance running for about five years and has run in numerous marathons.
She said she learned about the MS event through a podcast aimed at runners. She said the run sounded challenging, and it was a chance to be “part of something bigger than me.”
Asked about the notion of essentially running six marathons in six days, Kruse acknowledged the challenge and said, “I’m gonna do my best.”
On Monday, July 15, she said the first 19 miles went well, but the heat became a factor in the final seven or eight miles when she ended the day in Grovertown, along US 30.
To avoid the heat as much as possible, Kruse starts her daily run soon after daybreak.
On Tuesday morning, she was passing through downtown Plymouth and will likely stop overnight near Bourbon.
According to a map provided by the group, Kruse was expected to travel along Old Road 30 on the western portion of Kosciusko County. Much of the path treks along US 30.
Courtney was inspired to participate in the relay this year because she has several close friends with the disease and wanted to use her passion for running to help others.
“I’ve watched my friends struggle daily and worsen over time,” Kruse said in a prepared statement on the group’s website. “I will be running for those who can’t. For Lisa, Danielle, Chip, Chrissy, and many more. I will be running for me. I will be running and pushing my limits as a reminder to myself and others that we can do hard things and to never give up.”
As of Tuesday, Kruse was closing in on a commitment to raise $10,000.
She is expected to reach Van Wert by noon Saturday.
The relay begins each year in April in Santa Monica, Calif., and finishes in August in New York City.