The U.S. women’s soccer star ran part of the Chicago Marathon to raise money for charity.
Written by: Cielestia Calbay
Breakthrough soccer star Alex Morgan is best known for making headlines at this summer’s Women’s World Cup in Germany with her goal against Japan. But last weekend, she traded in her cleats for running shoes as she teamed up with Bank of America for its “Let’s Run Together” campaign alongside teammates Abby Wambach and Hope Solo.
The three ran a portion of the 34th annual Chicago Marathon as part of a charity relay program and were each given a $5,000 charitable contribution to their choice of Bank of America organizations.
Morgan, who chose to donate to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, served as team co-captain with Wambach and Solo, leading 13 other individuals chosen from hundreds of applicants who’d detailed how their participation would benefit their local communities.
“I was really excited for the marathon because I’d never been in that type of involvement before. Just surrounding myself with 45,000 runners was amazing,” said Morgan. “It was a fun cause to come together as a team just months after the World Cup; I think that’s why Bank of America chose us – because of our teamwork in Germany.”
Morgan says she felt inspired watching the runners cross the finish line, and even expressed her interest in pursuing marathons when she retires from soccer.
Long distance races aren’t part of the norm for soccer players because it slows their fast-twitch muscles and could even be detrimental to their training that focuses on speedwork and agility.
“I can definitely see myself training for a marathon after soccer. We talked about how far we could run and we felt that we could run longer. Hopefully [this marathon] won’t be my last,” said Morgan.
At just 22-years-old, Morgan was the youngest player on the U.S. roster at this summer’s World Cup. She’s a forward for the Western New York Flash and a member of the U.S. Women’s National Team, which she made history as the first Berkeley women’s soccer player to be drafted in the first round of Women’s Professional Soccer.
An all-around athlete, Morgan attributes her early involvement in a variety of sports to her success today because she was able to gauge where her strengths and weakness lay.
When asked what advice she has for those who want to challenge themselves athletically, she says, “Live in the moment and just have fun. We often spend too much time thinking about how to do something perfect but if we just enjoy it, then we can succeed.”