By Collin Lessing, JVA Consulting

Last Saturday night, I was checking the weather forecast for the following Sunday—snowy and 35 degrees. In May? I prayed this was a mistake, perhaps a glitch in my iPhone. I woke up the next morning and confirmed that my iPhone was in fact functioning correctly. It was really cold outside. There was no snow (yet), but there was a soft, ceaseless rain falling.

This should be a fun morning to run a 5K.

May in Colorado can offer the most beautiful weather, but there’s also a tiny chance for a winter storm.

That was the case last Sunday, which also happened to be the day of Clínica Tepeyac’s third annual Adelante 5K.

In my role at JVA, I’ve had the opportunity to work closely with Clínica for nearly four years. There is a lot that inspires me about Clínica, but one thing that always stands out is the commitment of just about everyone involved with this organization. From the staff, to the board, to the volunteers, to the patients—they are unstoppable in pursuit of their mission.


I’ve also seen that Clínica’s team is always trying to figure out ways to improve their approach and have healthier patients. For example, in recent years, Clínica has really pushed a wellness model that treats the whole patient. Part of that is access to exercise and nutrition classes at the Stapleton Recreation Center (which is on the same block as Clinica), that elevate the impact of the affordable and culturally-appropriate primary, preventative and behavioral health care services offered at the clinic

Clínica’s 5K is really an extension of that model—it’s not just a fundraiser—it’s priced in a way that doesn’t exclude people based on income. It’s an event that’s for everybody on race day.

That inclusiveness of everybody, the passionate commitment and the focus on the whole patient were all on full display Sunday morning. Despite the cold, and despite the rain (that eventually turned into snow), people showed up to run. Patients showed up to run. Volunteers showed up to run. Donors showed up to run.

As our JVA team huddled up with Clinica’s supporters around the starting line, my anxiety about the weather from the night before couldn’t have been farther away. The excitement about running in support of Clínica’s mission and in support of our own individual health had taken over. We were running for ourselves, but we were all in it together. And for the next 3.1 miles, we were unstoppable.