NeuroTrials Crew Mucking In for MS Research!

September 27, 2012

Katy McNulty is the Outreach Coordinator for NeuroTrials Research. Katy will be guest posting on the NeuroTrials blog, providing readers with a closer look into what it means to participate in the clinical research community.

Next Saturday, October 6, a brave crew of NeuroTrials’ finest will be getting down and dirty at the National Multiple Sclerosis Society’s Muck Ruckus Event to help raise awareness about MS research. The 5 mile trail race at Serenbe is peppered with challenges like crawling through the mud under barbed wire, climbing over crazy structures, and swinging on a rope over a pool of muddy water. It’s not for the timid!

How did we get into this? It seemed only natural! NeuroTrials has been “in the muck” of MS research (along with other neurological and sleep research) for more than 15 years. We were excited about the opportunity to honor the individuals who support and participate in MS research by literally getting in the muck ourselves.

We’ll be representing NeuroTrials as team “Research and Destroy.” We’ll be cheered on by a great team of co-workers who are manning a booth with information about MS research. They’ll have giveaways and candy as well, so be sure to stop by the tent and say hello!

Let me introduce you to the members of team Research & Destroy:

Shanna, our office manager, has been an athlete all her life. She’s been playing competitive basketball and soccer ever since she can remember… and hasn’t slowed down yet. Anyone who knows Shanna can tell you she’s not someone you want to tangle with! Her Yankee-fierceness and tenacity make her someone I’m grateful to have on my side. However, she’s never been a big runner. When she heard the course length, she said “5 miles!?!? Are you kidding me? I’ve never run 5 miles in my life! I practice sprinting for soccer, but I don’t do distance!” Don’t worry… she’s been adding runs to her workout regimen and something tells me she’s going to be just fine! I’ll be sure to stay out of her way.


Keir is a good friend from FusionSleep. She’s lively, fun and a natural team player who is not afraid to get dirty! Keir played some basketball in high school, but never considered herself an athlete. She started running about 3 years ago when she realized she was getting older and she “didn’t want to be one of those older people who can’t do anything.” Through exercise and lifestyle changes, she transformed herself and her body. So far, her greatest running distance is 10k and she’s training for a 15k in January. She says she’s not the fastest runner, but she’ll get there. Her slogan for this event is “Keir will bring up the rear”. But Keir’s transformative history leads me to believe that she might surprise herself once she’s in the muck for a good cause.


My own fitness history is varied and sundry. Growing up, I was always the tallest girl around and was constantly being asked about joining local basketball or volleyball teams – until they’d see me play. Then they’d stop asking! I practiced some yoga as an adult, but was otherwise sedentary and a firm believer in not running unless I was being chased. I started running 2 years ago after a few friends talked me into signing up for a Warrior Dash – a 5k trail/mud run with obstacles. Sound familiar? It looked like so much fun! I wasn’t afraid of mud, but I knew I would have to take up running so I wouldn’t look like a complete idiot on the course. I slowly trained and had a blast! Somewhere in there I learned to like running and went on to complete my first half marathon last March. A few months ago, I started doing Crossfit and I’m hoping the tough cross-training will come in handy for these obstacles. I’m excited to get in the mud again and for such a great cause!

If anyone would like to join team Research & Destroy, click the link to our team page and sign up! We are competing in the 10am recreational wave.

If you’d rather stay out of the muck, we welcome you to make a donation on our team page or come out and cheer us on. Serenbe is a fabulous venue! You can safely watch from the viewing areas, grab some lunch, visit the NeuroTrials booth, enjoy some family entertainment, and participate in a great cause.

For more information about our Multiple Sclerosis research study, click here: or call (404) 851-9934.