19 Apr 2017 10:17 AM EST
70-year-old Kathrine Switzer ran the 2017 Boston Marathon. It had been 50 years since she first competed in the event as the first woman to officially run it and she even wore the same bib number she wore in 1967. In 1967, only one woman crossed the finish line of the Boston Marathon as a registered entrant: Kathrine Switzer. The then-20-year-old Syracuse college student became the first registered woman to complete the race. It wasn't an easy feat for Switzer: She was attacked mid-race by a disgruntled race official, who tried to rip off her racing bib. Today, she's still doing her part to help women. She's teamed up with Girls on the Run in Washington, D.C., a nonprofit that uses running as a tool to help encourage girls to meet their full potential. Switzer also recently founded a charity called 261 Fearless, a global community for active women.
"When you take the first step, you have the courage to take another. You see you can do more, and suddenly discover you have much more capability than you knew," Switzer says. "The small dreams become big ones, courage becomes fearlessness, and hesitation turns to boldness. But you can't do any of it unless you take the first step, or are given the opportunity to try."
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