This autumn, as the cold started to creep in, UiPath Foundation set out to get UiPath employees out and about by challenging them to a run!

With the pandemic still raging across the globe this year’s edition of Bucharest Marathon needed a virtual twist, the Virtual Run, meaning that although participants did not get together for the event, they each ran their own path and digitally catalogued it within the marathon.

 

The challenge was greeted with enthusiasm across the Romanian branch of the company and the 50 running slots were rapidly filled by UiPath colleagues eager to put their feet to work as a way to show their support for the Foundation’s cause. Through their efforts, UiPath Foundation means to raise awareness on their endeavor to support children from underprivileged families reach their full potential and thrive

 

The UiPath Foundation team, 50 people, ran more than 600 km in two weeks. This is their story.

The setup

Late September. We have all our 50 runners ready and training. Internal comms channels are buzzing with excitement, curiosity and questions on this not-so-ordinary-pandemic-virtual-marathon. Not everybody is a runner so the entries range from the “I run as far as I can” to the full-fledged 42 km marathoners.

 

We liked the idea that everybody can (and should) run separately on their own path with the event remaining a joint effort, where a team makes strides for the greater good, giving agency to kids in less fortunate communities. We liked it so much that it inspired our runners’ motto: I run mypath so that the kids can run the future!”.

 

Now runners. On your marks. Get set. Go!

The prep

With stretching, planning and a bit of sweat, we counted down the days to the weeks of the event. As October weather can be somewhat capricious, not having a fixed date was a blessing. The flexible location made it easier for everybody to take part in the marathon story (no matter where they work from these days) and experience the event in their own way and their own geography. We saw the Foundation’s message reach far and beyond: from forests, to lakesides, to parks and roads.

I enjoyed participating in this sport event more than I initially believed I would. It brought us closer, despite the distance, it was a different get together. It was even more interesting as, besides the fun part of the competition, it also had the social component, for a cause so dear to my soul! And the motto chosen by UiPath Foundation perfectly points out this aspect: “I run my path so the kids can run the future

Iulia Rafai

UiPath

The marathon

It’s inspiring to find our motivation in doing good and knowing that each of our steps counts for a cause near and dear. It also helps to have a team that has the same goal as us in mind and that can motivate us through their effort, commitment and stamina.

 

We have that. We watched each other’s pictures and videos and discussed training sessions and prep work. Not everybody is a pro at running but we do all want to make a difference for the kids – inspire them that beyond the limits one might have, we learn and grow all the time.

 

We got our event running shirts on, water bottles filled, sports apps at the ready and stretch, like this event is stretching the reach of the UiPath Foundation. Ready to go.

 

Some runners might put some music on, others rely on their own rhythm. It takes a few steps, a few minutes to get going, just like in volunteer work, the first few moves are tougher.

 

Our inertia tries to keep us in our comfort zone but the prospect of change is so interesting and appealing that pushing through this first threshold isn’t that hard as we have our enthusiasm and goals in front. We are going to do what we set out to do.

 

Before we know it, the rhythm sets in, our legs move on their own, the process is taken over by the automation of your brain and we’re blissfully running.

 

As fatigue wears the body down, we start wondering if we can make it.  There’s a long road in front and for some of us it’s the longest run to date. We refocus and remind ourselves why we’re doing this, the brain reassures the body by reminding it of the joy our run can bring for others so we force our legs to take us further. Second threshold. Be strong, my mind.

What an incredible challenge and what profound satisfaction it brought along! The distance I chose to run seemed almost impossible, considering that I had no physical condition… the thought I was doing it to support an exceptional cause gave me strength and an extraordinary feeling! Step by step we can create a wonderful world and an exceptional future!

Dana Ene

UiPath

The aftermath

We did it! As endorphins flood our system, we can look back at our achievements. Each of us met our personal goals and did our best in exceeding our limits, both physical and psychological. We were more than happy to do it and the feeling of victory is only reinforced by the fact that UiPath Foundation made strides in raising awareness with our every step.

 

50 runners. 600 km +. Two weeks. One run. One cause that brought us together. A strong team, working together on separate paths, supporting one and other and encouraging one and other to bring the same support and encouragement to the UiPath Foundation team, the volunteers and the communities they are involved in.

I enjoyed participating in the 2020 Bucharest Marathon, as a proof of respect and appreciation for the work of the UiPath Foundation team. I put my body to work while my mind animated it with thoughts full of hope for a beautiful future of the children the foundation supports

Ovidiu

UiPath