My last column talked about sticking to those New Year's resolutions and since then, I learned that if ever there was a place to look for motivation, it's right here in Alamo, with Lisa Brereton.

Mother to sons Kevin, 26 and John, 23 and wife of Jeff Hug, Lisa lived a full life with her work at an investment company and hiking the hills of Alamo or riding horses nearly every day with Jeff. Oh, and the couple also enjoyed running marathons together. However, problems with her back meant that Lisa needed surgery and wasn't sure what the future held for her. I exchanged emails with her boys, and it was heartwarming to learn how together with Jeff, the men in her life helped Lisa get back on her feet.

"When my mom developed a herniated disk in her lower spine, her physical activities and adventurous lifestyle seemed to be coming to a screeching halt. She was informed, after being released from the hospital, that her recovery was going to be long and there was a possibility that she might not be able to return to horseback riding or any strenuous exercise," wrote John.

Here's the part that gets me motivated, folks. Just four months after Lisa had back surgery, she decided to train for a mini marathon and Kevin explained what happened next.

"Once she had healed and was ready to participate again, she invited John and me to compete at the Golden Gate Triathlon in Sacramento in October 2012. During my training with John here in Southern California, we thought of an idea, 'Team Brereton' because we were inspired by the amazing story of Rick and Dick Hoyt, 'Team Hoyt,' the father-and-son duo who compete in Iron Mans and marathons around the world," he wrote and reminded me that Rick Hoyt is the physically challenged son of an incredible father who pulls and carries him during each competition.

"Our goal is to raise money for the Cancer Research Foundation for each event that we participate in, in honor of our grandfather, Steve Jones," added Kevin. (If you happened to read a column I wrote last year about Kevin starting a college lacrosse team, it was Jones who helped Kevin get the program off the ground.) Did I mention this was a motivated family? Lisa's New Year's resolution was to do one marathon, triathlon or similar race each month throughout 2014, and so far she is on target. She told me she ran the "Hot Chocolate 15K" this past January in San Francisco with her friend and Alamo resident Sheila Peffer. Lisa just completed the Surf City Marathon in Huntington Beach with Sheila and with John, Kevin and Kevin's wife, Kaila. And so it goes -- Lisa and her family are no doubt in training again for another running event. I was going to ask for the details but needed to catch my breath! Hard to keep up with this bunch, and if I ever feel like sleeping in and missing a workout, I'll just think about Lisa's dedication and where it has gotten her!

SCHOLARSHIPS: The Danville-Alamo-Walnut Creek branch of the American Association of University Women is seeking candidates for its 2014 local scholarship program. Scholarships starting at $1,000 will be given to women entering their junior year in college or higher who have gone to school in our valley. Deadline is March 1, and recipients will be announced in May.

For details, visit http://daw-ca.aauw.net/2014-scholarship and download the application packet. For questions, email Lgood67334@comcast.net.

Contact Caterina Mellinger at around- alamo@hotmail.com.