MacDill Run Club improves fitness, builds bonds

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Tori Schultz
  • 6th Air Mobility Wing Public Affairs

“I started the run club to provide military members with an environment to strengthen bonds and an opportunity to beat their personal bests by running with a group,” said Airman 1st Class (A1C) Christian Cardwell, an executive administrative assistant with the 6th Mission Support Group and creator of the MacDill Run Club.


Cardwell desired to start a running club for MacDill service members as one of his initiatives as the dorm council president. With the help of the dorm council, his vision is now a reality.


“My vision is to improve running performance base-wide … through the enjoyment of camaraderie,” said Cardwell. “Running is much easier when you run with people you know rather than alone.”


While the main goal of the program is to improve personal fitness, he also hopes members will interact and build relationships with each other.


“This running club bridges gaps in communication throughout the wing and builds partnerships,” said Tech. Sgt. Thomas Laing, NCO in charge of the training and validation office with the 6th Logistics Readiness Squadron. “I have made many connections because of the MacDill running club, and as a supervisor and leader, there is no better feeling than when an Airman comes to you with a problem and your response is "I gotta guy!"


The MacDill run club is held once a month on the second to last or last Friday of every month. Cardwell is working on creating a SharePoint site to filter information to members and those interested in joining.


Currently, approximately 25-35 people attend run club and have the option to run three to seven miles with a group.


Cardwell said he believes the program will grow and continue helping MacDill Airmen with their run times and build strong social bonds. In the future, Cardwell and the dorm council plan to have glow and water balloon runs with gift cards and trophies given to those who achieve personal bests on their runs. Although Cardwell is the creator of the run club, he appreciates the help he received from his dorm council members.


“I believe if Airmen show up and meet other Airmen on base, they can build connections to solve their own problems and learn from one another,” said Laing. “A meeting of minds helps share ideas and create new innovative programs to help Airmen, their communities and the Air Force.”


Those interested in joining the run club can call A1C Cardwell at 813-828-4312.