Dodge City—Roderick Baker decided to run for 24 hours on Saturday, Sept. 26 in order to raise awareness for people recovering from various mental issues and addictions, such as alcohol, drugs, gambling and other vices.
The Dodge City man invited others to run with him because September is Recovery Month. He started at 9 a.m. and ran a square-like route from Ross Blvd to 6th Avenue to Frontview Street to 14th Avenue. Joined by a variety of other runners and supporters, Baker did not stop until 9 a.m. Sept. 27.
Formerly conflicted with addiction himself and recovered since May 23, 2014, Baker said he had been wanting to do something to raise awareness for a while, when he stumbled upon Addicts II Athletes, a nonprofit recovery support group.
Baker participated in a 5K virtual race, sponsored by Addicts II Athletes and while he did enjoy what he had accomplished to do, he wanted to do more.
"I kind of had that thinking that it’s ’go big or go home’ and ’why don’t we do something in Dodge,’ but I wanted to do something and make it bigger," said Baker.
Baker reached out on Twitter and to encourage others struggling with addiction.
"My goal is to keep moving forward," said Baker. "I’ve read these books where these guys do these ultramarathons, but what I’ve noticed while reading all these books, is that they’re all recovering alcoholics or drug addicts or gambling addicts and they just got their life straightened up by transferring into exercise, running, biking, swimming, for their therapy and that’s what I do."
Baker said that he usually goes for a run after work, calling it a great therapy.
To donate to Addicts II Athletes, flyers with a scannable QR code have been placed around Dodge City.