MUSKEGO (WITI) -- Between work and family, it's hard for many parents to find time for anything else -- but a Muskego mom has found a way to enjoy her passion while inspiring others to join her.
"A lot of times I tell people the reason that I run is to keep up with everything that is going on in my mind. It gives me the capability of not having to talk to another person or having six different priorities that I'm focused on," Tere Sackerson said.
Step-by-step, Sackerson is focused on making a difference.
"For me, running gives me peace. It helps me eliminate a lot of the anxiety because I take time to think about what needs to be done next," Sackerson said.
What's next could be a multitude of things. Sackerson is a mother of three young children and an executive at PNC Bank. She's the head of PNC Global Treasury Management for Wisconsin.
"We determine what we find to be valuable. So if it's something that's important to you within that 24 hours a day, you just need to find time and to look at it as doing something good for yourself," Sackerson said.
Sackerson says she makes time to run, and her steps add up to an average of about 3,000 miles a year.
She inspires those around her -- including her co-worker Jeremy Bennett.
"Pretty motivated by Tere, my manager. She goes out and runs long distances all the time," Bennett said.
Bennett is a member of Sackerson's treasury team at PNC Bank.
"I'm not a runner, former basketball player. I just thought if she could do it, maybe I can start running," Bennett said.
Bennett started running in January -- with the goal of running a half-marathon in PNC's Milwaukee Running Festival in November.
"I feel good about myself. And it just gets easier. I don't know how to explain. I think your body starts to adapt. You get more comfortable. It's like muscle memory," Bennett said.
Sackerson says inspiring others to run and be active is her mission.
"I see so many people who struggle with wellness as a part of their lives. I want everyone to have wellness in their lives. And I want them to feel prideful in whatever it is they do and whatever the activity is," Sackerson said.
Her passion for wellness is a big reason why Sackerson created a special race in 2008 for a friend who wouldn't run unless she was training for something.
"I told her, 'I will go ahead and I will put on a race just for you, from my home' and that was just enough to keep her with her discipline," Sackerson said.
The race, which wasn't timed and didn't have a set distance was only supposed to happen once.
"I think that's what makes it fun is there's no pressure. But we all encourage one another to do our best because we want to promote wellness, promote fitness," Jennifer Brown said.
The race has continued every year, and it has grown.
"I feel so good about giving something to someone else that benefits them and their health," Sackerson said.
Brown has been part of the race from the start.
"It's the atmosphere of being fit and being healthy and just enjoying one another's company," Brown said.
While helping themselves to live a more healthful life, race participants also help a cause that's close to Sackerson's heart.
"It was about a year ago in May that my son was diagnosed as being on the Autism spectrum. It's very meaningful for me to partner and help organizations within our community in Milwaukee who support and help these families and these children who are impacted with autism," Sackerson said.
So as the miles add up, so do the people finding inspiration and wellness as a result of the passion of a busy mom.
"For me, it's such a little piece of me that I give to others. But, what a great impact it is for them and how they feel about themselves," Sackerson said.
Sackerson was able to raise money to purchase spaces in the one-mile race for athletes for autism in the PNC Milwaukee Running Festival this fall. Her hope is that the one-mile distance is a starting point to ensure that children like her son can participate and feel just as proud completing a run as she does.
The inaugural Milwaukee Running Festival will take place the weekend of October 30th - November 1st, 2015 and includes a marathon, half-marathon, 5K and one-mile race. CLICK HERE to learn more.