Legacy of Hope is proud to welcome 29-year-old Cameron Brown as our latest sponsored athlete for the ,Philadelphia Love Run Half Marathon. This Germantown, Maryland native transplanted to Philly some eight months ago and enrolled as a fulltime student in Temple’s post-baccalaureate pre-med program. He hopes to start medical school this Fall, after which he plans to become an orthopedic surgeon in the Navy. Achieving these goals will make him the first physician in his family, as well as the first to serve in the armed forces.
The Love Run will be Cameron’s first half marathon, but he is no newcomer to running, “I ran track and field in high school and was more of a mid-distance runner. Sometimes I was with the sprinters, other times I was with the cross country runners. Running a half marathon has always been on my bucket list; so I figured, since I’m in a new city and medical school seems like it’s going to work out, that I would go for it, and I registered for the Love Run.”
Love Run’s ,Philly Runs Free registration option caught Brown’s attention because he’s inclined to help others. “You raise $250 for Legacy of Hope to help cancer patients in Philly and your registration fee is waived. That was a no-brainer for me since I’m going into medicine. I get the chance to do a half marathon and raise money for cancer patients—two birds with one stone.”
Given his track and field history, along with an undergraduate degree in kinesiology from the University of Maryland, Brown is well organized and knee-deep in his training regimen for the 13.1 miler on 3/26/23. He works out six days a week. In these first four weeks of training, he runs three miles on Mondays, 3.5 miles on Tuesdays, three at race pace on Wednesdays, strength training Thursdays, 3.5 miles at around a nine minute pace Fridays, and mixes things up on Saturdays with ,Yasso 800s and occasional cardio sessions in the pool. He does all this by following the simple mantra—Keep Showing Up. “Whatever you’re doing, you’ll see results if you keep showing up. Not everybody gets the opportunity to do what I‘m doing; I understand that it’s a privilege to be able to do it. And that keeps me going. Training for a specific event is also really helpful.” An added benefit of Brown’s workouts is that they help to alleviate the stress induced by the heavy workload of his rigorous post-bac program.
Thus far, Brown has had the good fortune of being impacted only peripherally by cancer. But he has been able to see repercussions of a cancer diagnosis through the eyes of his friends who’ve felt cancer’s impact more directly. “It’s not easy for people to be able to balance paying for treatment, keeping a roof over their head, and food on the table, the whole deal.”
Cameron shares that he feeds his soul by keeping in touch with his family back in Maryland. “I’m a big family guy, so hopping on the phone or FaceTime just to check in with them is great. My faith also definitely feeds my soul. I’m a big faith guy. I wouldn’t necessarily say that I’m religious, but my relationship with Christ is huge, and helps me stay in touch.”
Two years ago, Brown was introduced to the nutrition/fitness supplement company, 1st Phorm, through a friend. He has since become an official 1st Phorm Legionnaire. “Essentially I’m a coach to help people achieve the fitness results they want. I love it. I’m proud to be a part of their team because, to me, they represent what a healthcare provider should be about. Through their app you have access to nutritionists, dietitians, personal trainers, physical therapists—the whole gamut; and they’re monitoring your progress through the app. More than anything, I’d say that 1st Phorm is a group of people who want to educate people on how to live a healthy lifestyle. You gotta walk the walk. It’s always easier to guide people when you are living what you advocate on a day-to-day basis. I’m holding myself accountable; so now I can be in a healthy place to help hold other people accountable.”
Brown is right, accountability (and showing up) is everything. Given his tendency to “always try to make people feel welcome, included, seen, and heard,” it’s clear that he’s not only chosen the right career path but that he’s doing all the work needed to manifest his objectives. You can support Cameron in his first half marathon by ,donating to his Legacy of Hope fundraiser, if you’d like to make a go at running your first half marathon, you can run alongside him by registering at ,Philly Runs Free.