Don’t Quit Half Marathon 2018

This weekend I was in Dallas, TX to meet my girlfriend Lori’s family(!!) and celebrate her dad’s 70th birthday. Most of the festivities were happening Saturday evening, so we had all of Saturday morning and afternoon to kill. Lori knows I’m all about cheering, so she suggested we find a race somewhere in the area. A quick Google search led me to DFW Races, a database of races of all distances happening in the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex. I stumbled upon the Don’t Quit Half Marathon, an out and back race along the White Rock Creek Greenbelt. Now that we knew a race was happening, there was no turning back!

Don’t Quit

On January 5th, 2015, Don’t Quit founder and avid runner Jennifer Gray was severely injured in a car accident, and unsure if she would ever be able to run again. This, on top of the tragic suicide of her mother and unexpected passing of her father, was an emotional rollercoaster for Jennifer. Her experiences made her uniquely positioned to understand the struggles of depression from multiple perspectives. She vowed to never give up, and followed the long road of physical and mental recovery until she was back on her feet, crushing mile after mile. Grateful and wanting to give back, she channeled this same energy into something positive for everyone – the Don’t Quit race series.

Jennifer crushing her own race!

The proceeds for the race go towards NAMI Dallas, a branch of the largest grassroots mental health organization in the USA. I decided to cheer this race before I even knew the backstory. It is rare that a cheering experience becomes more powerful in retrospect, but this is one of those exceptions!

The Journey

On Friday night we stayed with some of Lori’s relatives about 20 miles south of Dallas. We took off at about 7 AM Saturday morning and arrived in northeast Dallas at around 7:45. The race started at 7:30, but our cheer spot was at Mile 11 so we had some time to kill. We stopped at a Whataburger for some breakfast. Whataburger doesn’t exist in NYC, and it’s definitely the food chain Lori misses most. I had the Breakfast on a Bun (it was alright).

Cheer Spot

The race took place along the White Rock Creek Greenbelt, northwest of White Rock Lake, which is a popular spot for runners. We picked Mile 11, near the intersection of Fair Oaks Ave and Merriman Pkwy. We arrived at 8:30 and waited for the runners to come through!


I didn’t get to listen to this playlist in advance, but luckily it was clean! It mainly consists of poppy electronic music, which usually does the trick when you’re 11 miles into a half marathon!

A special shot

While cheering we ran into a guy who was looking for his wife on the course. He also had a Nikon camera and told us he into amateur photography. When she came around, I got a picture of him getting a picture of her. I wish someone got a picture of me getting the picture of him getting the picture of her, just to make things even more meta.

Thanks for the share Jennifer!

Jennifer was kind enough to share the photos, which I had linked to her on Facebook. You can view all of them here, and a small selection is included at the end of this post.

Thanks for reading!

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