Madison Marathon Profile: Katey Collins


As the spring Madison Marathon events approach on May 23-24, 2015, we will be profiling one Madison Marathoner each week. As we get to know each athlete, we learn that the motivation to train for and complete such a challenging event comes in many forms.

First-time Madison Marathon athlete Katey Collins (39) is inspired by a first-grader named Beau. We asked Katey about why she runs and about the special boy that keeps her motivated.

Focal Flame Photography (FFP): How many Madison Marathons have you run? 
Katey: This is my first in Madison.

FFP: With so many races to choose from, why did you choose to participate in the Madison Marathon this year? 
I love the community, and my friends are participating.

FFP: Do you participate in other similar events? 
Yes, triathlons, mud runs, open water races, aquathons, long relays such as Ragnar and Door County.

FFP: What have been some of your favorite events? 
Daytona Beach Aquathon, Door County Tri, Big Shoulders Chicago, and Race Day Events Aquathon Series.

FFP: Do you do anything to make the races more meaningful or fun?
Yes, I go with friends and wear something in honor of Beau.

FFP: How did you connect with Beau?
I meet him through the group IRun4. [Editor’s note: The group I Run 4 Michael is a nonprofit organization that pairs athletes with a child or adult with special needs, thereby providing a source of encouragement and support for both the athlete and their buddy.]

FFP: What does running and participating in these types of events mean to you?
It keeps me healthy, mentally AND physically. Training with my friends is as much fun as the event itself. I also get to run in honor of Beau.

Katey Collins (photo provided by Ms. Collins). 

Katey Collins (photo provided by Ms. Collins). 

FFP: Can you tell us about Beau?
[Beau is] an amazing young man who has Cerebral Palsy. He is in first grade, and as his Mom describes him, ‘He has strength, courage, and a will like no other. He has a determination that makes me so proud to be called his mom. Things may be tough for him but he always finds a way to overcome obstacles and he doesn't know the word can’t.’

Beau loves being active, and I truly enjoying doing races for him. He inspires me as I am training and racing. If I am feeling down or frustrated I just think about how many obstacles he has to overcome on a regular basis.

FFP: Are there any other personal accomplishments you would like to mention?
I have been fortunate enough to compete as an athlete in school, college, and as an adult. Sports have taught me countless life lessons that I pass on to my children, those in my community and those I work with. In order to give back, I have started a non-profit organization with my husband, GOAL. We raise money to pay sports registration fees for youth in the East Troy and Mukwonago communities in Wisconsin.

This article is part of a series featuring athletes who are participating in a Madison Marathon event in 2015. The spring events will occur on May 23-24, 2015 on the streets of Wisconsin's capitol city.  For more information or to register, visit Madison Marathon.

- by Erin Patterson