A record 1001 staff, students, alumni and community members will be donning their red Team Griffith shirt and running shoes for the Gold Coast Airport Marathon being held on the 4th and 5th of July.

Research leader at Griffith’s Institute for Glycomics and marathon runner, Dr Lara Herrero, said keeping healthy was an important part of the university’s culture.

“Being fit and having a healthy lifestyle helps to protect against many of the diseasesour team at the Institute for Glycomics work so hard to find cures for,” she said.

Future Research Leader and marathon runner Dr Lara Herrero takes off her lab coat ready for the Gold Coast Airport Marathon.

Future Research Leader and marathon runner Dr Lara Herrero takes off her lab coat ready for the Gold Coast Airport Marathon.

Dr Herrero’s passion for running started after contracting Ross Rivervirus, a debilitating illness which has struck more than 5000 people in SEQ this year alone.

“I was sick for two years and one day I just saidto myself,enough is enough so I put on my sneakers and tried to run,”she said.

“At first I couldn’t run more than 10 minutes but it became a battle of will. After that I just got healthier and healthier.”

In preparation for this year’s Gold Coast marathon, Dr Herrero has been running up to 70km each week.

Some of this year's Team Griffith participants.

Some of this year’s Team Griffith participants.

Deputy Vice Chancellor (Engagement) Martin Betts said it is extraordinary to see so many people from Griffith participating in the Gold Coast Airport Marathon.

“It’s a great event and I am so proud to see people from all parts of Griffith community stepping up to the challenge,” he said.

Griffith Sports College manager Duncan Free OAM is passionate about helping students find a balance between a sporting career and study.

“We have a great reputation of creating flexibility for our elite athletes which helps in creating a perfect study sport balance,” the former Olympian said.

The Sports College currently has more than 400 members and has helped many elite athletes including Griffith Business School alumnus Michael Shelley, who won a gold medal in the marathon at the 2014 Commonwealth Games.

Fast facts

  • 1001 total Team Griffith participants
  • 117 Team Griffith participants running the full marathon
  • 359 staff (17.7% increase), 207 students (12.5% increase), 435 alumni, family and friends (109% increase)
  • Each year the number of participants has grown from 189 in 2012, 518 in 2013 and 700 in 2014

Run and raise

Team Griffith is hoping to raise record funds for a cause close to our heart – theStudents’ Future Fund, which provides Griffith Futures Scholarshipsto talented and dedicated students from all backgrounds to ensure they can complete their education regardless of personal financial circumstances.

Read how the fund has helped change the lives of students such asMala,Krystal,Braydon,BrookeandJoyce. We believe everyone has the right to education and that’s why we are usingEveryday Heroto assist with fundraising to create more Griffith Futures Scholarships this year.