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Meet Becky: July’s Inspiring Member

Stillwater Moms on the Run member Becky Solensten (pictured on the right in the photo) is a warrior. Throughout an intense battle with cancer last year, she continued to show up to class to run, walk and keep getting stronger. In June, she crossed the finish line of Grandma’s Half Marathon in Duluth, Minn., after completing chemotherapy.

Franchise Owner Beth Johnston shared, “Becky is an inspiration and we [couldn’t] wait to cheer her on as she complete[d] her first half marathon after beating cancer.”

Read more of our conversation with Becky to learn why she’s our inspiring member of the month.

Q: When did you first join Moms on the Run? Please share a bit about how you got involved. Were you a runner before Moms on the Run?

A: I joined Moms on the Run in the Spring of 2015. I was about to become an empty nester as my daughter was in her first year at college and my son was a senior in high school. Both would be going away to college in the fall, leaving me with a very quiet house and time on my hands. I saw an ad for MOTR and had some doubts given that I had not run much since being on the high school track team many years ago, but I signed up and thought I would give it a try. 

Q: Your franchise owner Beth told us you have been in the midst of a cancer battle, but continued to show up for class to walk, run and keep getting stronger. Would you be willing to share a bit about your journey?

A: About a year ago, I went to what was supposed to be a regular checkup with my doctor. That day, I went home knowing I had a mass in my abdomen, which was probably cancer. After a few more appointments and more tests, I was scheduled for surgery. Recovery was slower than I would have liked, but I got through it with help from family and my MOTR friends. They organized a meal train and volunteered to get out and walk with me. As I started feeling better, I went back to class. The doctors encouraged me to take it slow, but to stay active as that would help my recovery. It helped me both physically and mentally.

Becky at Grandma's Marathon

Q: You celebrated the end of your chemotherapy by running Grandma’s Half. Please share about the race and experience.

A: After surgery, I was told that I was cancer free, but was dealt a setback. The doctors wanted me to do chemotherapy to prevent recurrence. During my 5 months and 12 treatments of chemo, I looked forward to going to class as that was something I had been doing for years and felt good getting back to it. I had run races in the past and wanted to get back into that as well. Registration opened up for Grandma’s half marathon and I took a leap of faith that I would be able to do it. And I did. Crossing the finish line was absolutely amazing.

Q: At Moms on the Run, we talk about being #MOTRstrong, what does that term mean to you?

A: #MOTRstrong means you are never alone and there are people to support you when you need it — they are there for the highs, the lows, and everything in between.

Q: What have you learned about yourself since becoming a part of Moms on the Run?

A: I have learned that hard things take time and patience. Keep at it. It will get easier. I also know that doing MOTR helped me with my recovery, and for that I am thankful.

Q: What advice would you give to someone who is considering Moms on the Run?

A: It is hard to show up that first night, but we have all been there. We are not your stereotypical running group. We are a group of women doing life together. You will be amazed at the friendships that form over time as you continue to come to class. And the coaches are absolutely the best.