Name: Monique White
Class Year(s): 1992
Student Activities: Black Student Association
Occupation: Travel, Running, & Lifestyle Blogger, Content Creator, Influencer
Local Notre Dame club or affinity groups: Black Alumni of Notre Dame; Notre Dame Club of Netherlands
How did you set your goal to run 50 marathons in 50 countries by age 50, and what has the experience been like?
After completing a number of races in The Netherlands (where I live) and a few in France — a favorite vacation spot — I expanded my vision along with my territory and set the goal to log miles in every country and city I traveled to. Eventually, I upgraded my goal to a “quest to run the world.”
Sometime around 2015, I looked at my race history and saw that I had run in close to 20 countries at that point, so I decided to set a more defined goal. I was also going through a divorce at the time, and approaching 50 I felt like I needed something to run toward. Aware of the trend of running races in 50 states, I used that as a model and set the goal of #MoniqueRuns50.
This goal was slightly altered due to all of the canceled and postponed races because of COVID-19. I had initially planned to meet my goal by my 50th birthday but adjusted to hit it during my 50th year or before my 51st birthday at the end of August.
I’m happy to report that to date I’ve run full and half marathons in 46 countries on 6 continents. However, getting to the finish line requires that I make another pivot. Since as of now there are no more (in-person) races for me to do before that deadline in August, I will do virtual races as placeholders with the caveat that the virtual race has to be someplace I’ve been.
Races are coming back with a vengeance in the fall and I’ll swap out the virtual placeholders with in-person races then
#MoniqueRuns50, though different than I originally envisioned, will happen.