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Sophia Bush has announced a special charity challenge to raise money to assist the clean-up following the Gulf oil spill.

“I am going to run a half marathon this November,” she wrote on her blog. "Yup. Me. The asthmatic with a years-old knee injury, who hasn’t run a mile since Junior High. No seriously. Since Junior High, as in since I was 13 years old. For the record I am now 28, but thanks to the genes of my kick ass parents (I love you Mom and Dad!) I still get carded when I buy beer for BBQs at the grocery store. Yay for me!

“Why would I do this to myself, you ask? Or is that me asking? I’ve been asking myself that question a lot since last Tuesday when I decided to do this. The ‘why’ is the Gulf. And it’s also you guys, really. I got the idea from the King of Crowdrise himself, Edward Norton, who ran the New York City marathon last year to raise money for the Maasai Wilderness Conservation Trust, a charity that stole my heart many years ago and still has a firm grip on it. Now, I make no claim to be anywhere near as tough as Ed, but I am determined. And in bouncing creative fundraising ideas off of some pals at work in North Carolina, I mentioned Ed’s marathon, and my friend Jane said, “Well, you know there’s a half marathon here in November.” I promptly laughed in her face.

“So it begins. Week 2 of training has begun. And our group is growing. As of today we have about 12 runners, and as each day passes more and more people are joining up to run for the cause. We are all reaching out to our friends and our loved ones to sponsor us, and hopefully we will be able to raise some more funds for the people of the Gulf Coast. They need all the help they can get. So I am running. For the Gulf. For all of you. Because when my lungs start hurting, and when my legs start screaming “this running business is BULL, Sophia!” I think of all of YOU.

“I think of the letters I have read on Crowdrise detailing the way you are all newly inspired, and changing the way you interact with the planet. I think of Matt Petersen, head of Global Green, and my green warrior and inspiration. I think of my parents, who, my entire life, have told me that there is nothing I cannot achieve. I think of Beth Galante, of Global Green New Orleans, who stood next to us spouting legal intricacies, refusing to back down when we were threatened with arrest on the beaches of Grand Isle. I think of Elyssa G., a new friend from Crowdrise, who is starting to change her world at 16 years old, and who I know will do great things in life. I think of Heather, and each and every one of you, who made me that incredible video, saying something as simple as “thank you,” that made me weep with gratitude.

“I think of all of the love and appreciated and motivation that I am filled with each and every day when we trade letters, and facts, and tips for saving the world online! I think of you guys, and I know that I can do this. I can challenge myself for others when I am having a hard time challenging myself alone.”

Find out more at Sophia’s Crowdrise page.

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