Making Miles Count for Charity
How One SparkleSister Found her Runspiration Through a Phone App
In 2010 Patti Tempio-Wilson received a wake-up call. She was 50-pounds overweight and diagnosed with asthma, high blood pressure (HBP), and high cholesterol (HC). Though genetics played a role in her HBP and HC, Patti was horrified at the thought of being on medications for the rest of her life. After all, she was only 36!Determined not to spend her life refilling prescriptions, she made a few dietary changes (portion control, drinking more water, and getting a handle on her sweet tooth) and started walking; Patti dropped 30 pounds, reduced her BP meds and got off the cholesterol meds. Then, inspired by her husband’s fitness routine, she incorporated running and shed the final 20 pounds.
“Running was a great way for us to encourage each other and have fun. He’s still my biggest inspiration.”
Even though Patti enjoyed running, the bug hadn't bitten her...yet! It wasn’t until two years later while she was flipping through Fitness Magazine that she discovered her runspiration, the Charity Miles app.
“I thought no way, too good to be true! I walk, run, and bike, then money gets donated to charity; ok cool, what's the catch? Well turns out, the catch was just what I needed: purpose. That's all. Moving with purpose every day. Simple.”
She downloaded the free app, used it for a few days to log miles for Autism Speaks, and then started telling anyone who would listen. She told her husband, daughters, best friend, co-workers, even random people at the gym.
“I was on a mission to post on Facebook and Instagram about how cool it was that my miles mattered, not just for my health anymore, but for so many charities I already supported!” said Patti. Knowing her miles contributed to charity, was all she needed to lace up and get moving!
“I was officially in love with running and had fully embraced my new active lifestyle thanks to this genius bit of compassionate technology!”
Charity Miles 101
Patti said Charity Miles now has 39 charity partners, and she works hard to support them all every month, however, she does have her favorites: Special Olympics, St. Jude's, Team RWB, Crohn's & Colitis, ASPCA and Autism Speaks.
“Each one of these charities benefits and represents someone I love. It's highly motivating to be able to support them while I run, walk, hike, shop, dance in the living room. What a wonderful way for me to honor them, do good, feel good and that always leads to looking good, because when you're happy it shows!”
“Charity Miles gives the average human a chance to become a Sponsored Athlete, regardless of ability!”
The app isn’t just for training or long runs, even a quick dog walk or shopping trip counts thanks to GPS and Indoor Mode, which uses the phone's accelerometer to track movement. However, the app does require having your iOS or Android device on you to log your mileage.
“I was obsessed with finding a comfortable way to carry my phone. I tried almost every arm band on the market, disliked them all for one reason or another. I bought running belts from every price range, finally settling on one of those, but still something was missing. Then I found out what I was missing...Sparkle!”
Patti said SparkleSkirts checked all her “boxes”: Made in America. Check. Outstanding customer service. Check. Unique, sassy, functional. Check. Check. Check. But we know what really sealed the deal. POCKETS!
“I had a safe, perfect spot for my phone and easy access to my asthma inhaler. Beautiful gear that allows me to log chafe-free miles, in patterns guaranteed to put a smile on my face with every run. To sweeten the deal, SparkleSkirts is also philanthropic! I am so appreciative of the support they give to wonderful charities like Give Kids the World, Running for Rescues, Autism Speaks, the Barber Institute for Autism Research and the Donna Foundation. Supporting a company with a heart is very important to me.”
Another benefit? The SparkleSisterhood!
“I have also gained a new community of support and inspiration with my fellow SparkleSisters! My SparkleSkirt collection has grown rapidly, with no plans on slowing down. I have ‘facilitated’ several friends to find and release their inner Sparkle while making their miles matter!”
She said the biggest Sparkle highlight though was becoming a #coupleofSparklers. Her husband Chris is also a Charity Miles Ambassador and a big fan of the SpareParts, SparkleSkirts new men’s running line.
Patti is currently Sparkling through the Dumbo Double Dare training! You can follow her journey on Instagram and Twitter @Ptdubbs98. Added bonus, her adorable pups Bacci & Pippa also have a social media presence, @glossyaussie. Patti said she is always excited to follow back and encourage anyone she can along the way.
Thank you Patti for inspiring us and including SparkleSkirts on your charitable fitness journey!