Lynne Horan may be driving in this year’s Ruck4HIT, but it hasn’t stopped her from setting out on weekly training runs on Wednesdays, from The Lanes in Mashpee Commons, and Saturdays, from Cape Cod Coffee in Mashpee, with those who are running in it. She’s also participated in the 16-week cross training organized by Cape Cod Rehab in Mashpee.
“They are all very inspiring, this group. That’s why I’ve been training with them,” she explained. “I wanted to know what they had to experience and what they had to do for training, so I simulated their experience.”
In 2022, Lynne was a volunteer, supporting participants in the grueling race which sees runners run with a weighted rucksack for 2 to 4 miles at a time. Over the course of the 200-mile race, participants may run up to 30 miles in roughly 36 hours on little sleep inside a van with six other runners and two drivers.
One of the exchanges she volunteered at last year, Terra Luna in Truro, was a PT stop where the physical therapist team supported runners nearly midway through the ruck. “Seeing the runners come in, and people jumping out of vans and everyone supporting each other and getting treatments and getting going again, I found it very impressive what people are capable of doing,” she said. “And then for them being able to carry on and being able to smile and do it all over again was inspiring to see.”
That motivated her to step up her involvement this year. She’ll be participating on Team ShamRuck.
While they are welcome to attend training runs leading up to the Ruck4HIT, most drivers don’t do what Lynne has done over the past five months. She has found it to be rewarding. “I wanted to know what they do to get themselves ready for such a high intensity run with a lack of sleep and tough eating conditions and being jammed in a van,” she said. “How do they get ready for that? I found it enlightening to see all the things they have to do to prepare for this.”
A nurse by trade – she currently works for Falmouth Cardiology – Lynne will be leaning on the qualities that she has needed over the course of her career. “I’m hoping some of my nursing skills pay off and I’m able to keep everybody upbeat, inspired, and moving,” she said.
Lynne, who lives in Mashpee with her husband of 35 years, Mark, will have the support of her family, including her children Leanne, Kelli, Neal, and Gregory, some of whom have stepped up as volunteers for this year’s race.
As she gets closer to competing in her first Ruck4HIT, there’s a mix of nerves and excitement. As the daughter of a Marine, she understands just how important the event is.
“Heroes In Transition does such a variety of things – they cover all the bases, from helping veterans with PTSD to military spouses to their families,” she said. “Their events are always inspiring, especially when they have people come and talk about what they are going through. Every time I go to one, I make sure I bring my tissues because their stories hit me. If you think about what the people they’re helping go through as I mosey on through my day, it really hits home which is why I’m so happy to participate in this race.”