How One ‘Bad Idea’ Inspired an Entire Fandom
For fans of Supernatural, it is no secret that they have one of the loudest, most generous fanbases in television history. The show has been on the air for fourteen seasons (with the fifteenth starting in the fall as it’s last), and together, they have created many wonderful things. They’ve raised money for many different charities; built a school with Random Acts; donated food, clothing, and items for shelters; and banded together in crisis for natural disasters to help share information for those in need. They’ve gotten weird with GISH, helped with mental health awareness, and supported and worked with the LGBTQ+ community and Out Youth.
Now, they’ve also inspired a fandom to run…literally. It all started with ‘The Bad Idea Tour’, when a group of Supernatural cast members made a pact for Random Acts‘ Endure 4 Kindness to run the Amica Seattle Marathon. The cast decided to run to raise money for Random Acts to fight childhood hunger across the United States and around the world.
The group of runners included: Jensen Ackles, Jared Padalecki, Misha Collins, Rob Benedict, Jason Manns, Adam Fergus, Charlie Capen, Genevieve Padalecki, Vicki Vantoch, and Rachel Miner.
Ackles, Padalecki, Benedict, and Manns had previously completed a Tough Mudder event together in 2015 (along with Richard Speight, Jr. and Osric Chau), which includes running a series of endurance obstacles. However, this was a challenge of a whole new level – 26.2 miles of straight running.
On November 25, 2018, the team ran the Amica Seattle Marathon. Ackles, J. Padalecki, Collins, Benedict, Manns, and Fergus ran the full marathon. Capen, G. Padalecki, Vantoch and Miner did the half-marathon.
Genevieve Padalecki finished the half marathon with a total course time of 01:45:20, with a pace of 08:03 minutes per mile. Vantoch finished with a course time of 03:13:54. Capen finished with a total time of 02:50:46. Miner completed up to the five-mile marker before she stopped to help out at the Random Acts water station.
Everyone that was competing in the marathon partnered up with each other. Jared Padalecki and Jensen Ackles ran the marathon together, and finished with a time of 04:33:42. Adam Fergus and Misha Collins also ran the marathon together, finishing at 04:42:46. Rob Benedict and Jason Manns completed the marathon together with a time of 05:29:56.
‘The Bad Idea Tour’ team pledged to match donations of up to $100,000, and according to the Crowdrise page, as of this date, they have raised more than $118,300.
Not long after, Jared and Genevieve Padalecki announced they were going to run The Boston Marathon, which would take place on April 15, 2019. The two launched a crowdrise campaign to raise money for Dream Big!, a 501c(3) supporting, outfitting, supplying, encouraging and providing opportunities for young girls who, due to economic circumstances, are unable to participate in sports activities. Jared and Gen also launched a new campaign with Stands, called Run Pads Run, where the purchases would also benefit Dream Big! As of this date, their crowdrise raised over $48,700.
After The Bad Idea Tour and Run Pads Run, members of the fandom were inspired to do different races and events to help raise money as well.
Kaci, one of our staff members, was inspired by ‘The Bad Idea Tour’ and started training for her very own marathon. Kaci shares her story with us below:
The Supernatural cast inspires me every day, but I never thought they would be the reason why I’m living a healthy lifestyle. Back in November, Misha Collins, Jared and Genevieve Padalecki, Jensen Ackles and the rest of ‘The Bad Idea Tour’ team ran the Seattle Marathon for charity. As they were promoting it, I just thought, “Wow, that’s nice. Good for them,” but as I watched alert after alert come in showing their progress in the race, I became inspired. When I was younger, my dad ran the San Diego Rock N’ Roll Full Marathon. We made a whole family vacation around the race, and I remember cheering my dad on while he crossed the finish line. Since that moment, I have always had “run a marathon” on my bucket list. As I got older, I realized that I absolutely hated running. Soon my goal of crossing the finish line became an after thought, and I moved on to other goals. It wasn’t until I saw my favorite actors run, that I felt a burst of motivation and inspiration. Since they ran the marathon, I’ve been training for my own. I have signed up for the San Antonio Rock N’ Roll Full Marathon in December 2019, and I’ve been training ever since. When I first started training, I couldn’t even run a mile. Now I just finished my first 10K, and I see no end in sight. I’m so grateful for the stars of Supernatural for motivating me to finally reach this goal of mine that I thought would never happen, for opening my eyes to living a healthy lifestyle, and for making me feel strong and empowered as I make this a reality.
Amy shared her story with us of being inspired and also signing up to run the San Antonio Rock N’ Roll Full Marathon in December 2019, alongside Kaci. Amy shares with us her inspiration, stating, “Last fall I donated to ‘The Bad Idea Tour’, but didn’t really think too much about it. That all changed the day of the race. I was glued to my phone to see every race update, every video, every clip. More importantly, so was my 11 year old son. He was enthralled. He eagerly asked me, ‘Mom, are you going to run a marathon?’ My son has special needs, and I am hellbent on teaching him that he can do anything he sets his mind to. I answered, ‘I will think about it.’ The next morning I woke up [thinking], ‘Hell yes, I want to run a marathon.'” Amy has been training ever since. She states, “Everyday is one step closer to running a marathon with the two Supernatural sisters in San Antonio. I ran 4.5 miles the other day! I am running my first 10k next month. I have lost weight, I have more energy, and I freaking love the look on people’s faces when you tell them you are going to run a marathon. Only badasses run marathons.”
Dayna also shared her story about her inspiration to run.
In Nov 2017, I went to my first convention. I had photo-ops with Misha, and J2 (Jared and Jensen). I was so happy during the op, being able to meet them, but when I picked up my photos, I had a hard time looking at myself.Fast forward to May 2018, I was over 300 pounds and absolutely miserable. So, I dove in head first to attempt to change my life. I started Weight Watchers and went to the gym four days a week, taking fitness classes.In Sept 2018, at my second convention I was down 46 lbs. I was feeling pretty good, but again when I picked up my ops, especially my solo with Jared, I knew I had a long way to go.Around this time ‘The Bad Idea Tour’ was in full swing, and seeing their training videos really helped keep me going on days when I didn’t want to workout. I started to think about dipping my toes into that type of workout, and started to do some research. I found out about Couch to 5K, and in February 2019, I started this program. I finished it in 8 weeks, and went from barely being able to jog for a minute or two at a time, to being able to sustain a steady pace for 30 minutes.I have moved on from that program, to the next step which is training for a 10K. I have also started to watch Supernatural episodes while running, and it helps to see my inspiration right in front of me each day. I plan to run the virtual Iron Man 5K in July, and I’m starting to research actual 5Ks as well. My big goal currently is to be able to run the Disney World Star Wars half marathon next year, I feel like Jared would approve!‘The Bad Idea Tour’ and Run Pads Run helped inspire me to take up running, and in total, so far I have lost 95 lbs. I still have more to go, but the running truly has helped me lose inches and change my body, even if the scale is slower to reflect. Always Keep Fighting has been my strongest inspiration from day one as well, and I owe my life and my better health to Jared and the cast of Supernatural. Without them, I don’t think I would have been strong enough to get this far, but I think that they would be proud of how much I have accomplished and would encourage me to continue.
A group of fans came together to form We Run: The World Tour. The team planned to run the Nashville half marathon, on April 27, 2019. The team included Hailee J., Stephanie H., Iliana H., Ciree JB., Kristin J., Anna K., Taya H., Marysia L., Dawn G., Jenn R., Leah D. and Kelly M.
The team planned to raise money for St. Jude, and donate other items for charity. Some members of the team shared their story with us. Hailee, one of our editors, shared how the team formed, stating, “It was the day of ‘The Bad Idea Tour’, and I was feeling INSPIRED! Everyone had done such an amazing job and raised so much money! I was an insanely proud fan that day. I mentioned in a group chat jokingly about the Nashville marathon being in April and maybe I could do the half marathon. One of my friends, Ciree, responded back that she would do it with me.” Thus, the We Run: The World Tour was born.
Hailee also shared more about training, stating, “Training was difficult. All of us had our problems: sickness, injuries, crazy schedules, the cold, access to places to run when unable to run outside, etc. But having a support group to hold us accountable and encourage each other has been extremely helpful. I ran cross country and track in high school and completed a half marathon in college, so I knew physically I could do it. I would just need to train, and my fellow teammates were the ones to give me the boost to get up and actually do it. I would not be at this point in my training without them.”
Kristin shared her story of why she joined, stating, “Seeing our boys and cast do the marathon in Seattle… [and] achieve so much, who couldn’t help but be inspired. [After seeing] the support that all of them have for each other all thanks to Misha’s “Bad Idea,” it was a no-brainer to want to be a part of the next thing with a rag-tag group of friends who wanted to help give back as well. And selfishly, the opportunity to get my own self back to the gym and get back into shape? It was a pretty good motivator!”
Unfortunately due to a family emergency and injuries, Kristin was unable to run the race, but stuck together with the team to support them.
The We Run: The World Tour team ended up raising over $4,350 to St. Jude, and donated over 262 (two per total mile ran) self-care items to a local Nashville charity that educates parents and helps end cycles of abuse within families. Hailee states, “There has been so much joy and a profound feeling of accomplishment in doing this. Plus, our team has caught the running bug and is now planning on doing the half/full marathon in San Antonio in December – and yes we are recruiting!”
If you’re just as inspired as we are, let us know! Share your story in the comments below.