52 marathons in 52 weeks: Austin Marathon runner dedicates year - MyFoxAustin.com | KTBC Fox 7 | News, Weather, Sports

52 marathons in 52 weeks: Austin Marathon runner dedicates year to her dad

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The 2013 Austin Marathon and Half Marathon is just hours away. 20,000 runners from all over the world will be running through the streets of Austin Sunday morning.


It's a 26.2 mile marathon and a 13.1 mile half marathon and 5k run that benefits 26 charities. Livestrong is just the one the race happens to be named after.

This year, all 50 states are represented as well as 20 foreign countries.

And 70% of those running are visiting Austin.

So race director John Conley tells us the point is for runners to see the Austin sights along the way.

For those not running, that means a lot of road closures you'll need to prepare for.

But Conley says don't let it intimidate you.

"The roads open up in back of the last runner. Nearly all of our intersections that are controlled by a traffic light will have an Austin Police Department officer there whose job is to make sure the runners pass safely but can direct motor vehicle traffic through the race route. So yeah we've got a lot of road closures but by no means is the city gridlocked," Conley said.

To see all of those closures, you can go to www.youraustinmarathon.com

Besides that, the Austin Marathon always has a lot of emotional stories running through it.

Today, we met with a lady who is running for something that means a lot to her --- awareness for Pancreatic Cancer.

Julie Weiss came a long way for the Austin Marathon. She's from Santa Monica, California and she's running for her dad.

"Unfortunately, in 2010 my father passed away from Pancreatic Cancer within 35 days of diagnosis. And I was so devastated, he was my biggest fan and I knew that I had to do something to create awareness and funds for the disease," Weiss said.

So she says she wanted to do something "big and dramatic"...so she decided to run 52 marathons in 52 weeks.

"Here I am, number 48 and I've raised $142,000 through my website, marathongoddess.com," Weiss said.

This self-proclaimed "Marathon Goddess" is a mother of 2 and works in real estate.

She says every weekend, she hops in a plane and goes to a marathon. She's beeng doing it since last March.

Weiss says her dad was always there to cheer her on when she ran marathons before he died and it was their dream for her to qualify for the Boston Marathon.

"I attempted Boston 19 times and he passed away just one week before I qualified but I know he was there with me. He was the wind on my back, you know, he had the best seat in the house," Weiss said.

Weiss says every time she runs, she dedicates it to someone who has lost their life to Pancreatic Cancer.

"I get emails from people almost every other day telling me about their stories and asking me to run in their honor so that's what I do," Weiss said.

Weiss tells Fox 7 all of the money goes to the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network.

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