Ten-year-old triplets running on the streets with their dad is not something that you see every day.
Triplets Ian, Miles and Zoey Schuler along with parents Gregg and Meiling Schuler, Bellevue residents, all participated in the Blooms to Brews marathon on April 9.
The marathon is held every year in Woodland, about 30 miles north of Portland.
The kids ran the relay marathon with their dad and were the youngest participants, while Meiling ran the full marathon and placed first in her age group. The relay is split between four members, with each running about 6.5 miles.
What inspired Gregg and the kids’ persistence for running was Meiling’s encouragement and drive.
Meiling started running in 1994. Her first run was a quarter mile on the track. She later took to the roads and slowly started increasing her speed and distance.
Now, Meiling runs twice a week, 10 miles each time.
She was “so happy to participate in this race” because it meant she could run with each of her family members for their leg of the marathon.
When the triplets were eight, they started going on runs with their dad. “We started running in the neighborhood and we run from our house to the Cougar Ridge school and back — it’s about five miles… we get a lot of our friends from school honking and waving at us,” said Gregg.
“Back in 2011, when I had a physical, they told me ‘guess what? You have Type 2 diabetes. If you want to be around with your kids, you need to be more focused on exercising,’” Gregg said.
Gregg ran a bit before he and Meiling met, but never long races. Meiling encouraged him to do more organized events.
Zoey feels “open to the world” when running, but on rare occasions feels that it is something she has to do. When running, she felt important to her team. “I passed about 15 people, which made me feel special because I’m much younger than them.”
Similarly, Ian said “I like running, but when it is raining, my shoes get wet and I get a little grumpy.”
Running makes Miles feel like he can do anything, and he likes it because not many ten-year-olds can run six miles.
“I’m very proud of my children’s resilience for running. I want them to know that we have legs to take us places if the car breaks down. It’s a freedom. I hope they grow into running adults and think about the times that we ran together,” said Meiling.