Keshia Roberson is Running 4 All Women

Never underestimate the strength of a Black woman.  They are the strength and backbone to many things that tend to go unnoticed. They are the change makers, the rock that keeps families together, caregivers, and offer visions that are incredibly powerful when the passion is there to create and create changes within our communities. Launching this publication back in 2020 has continued to show me how passionate and strong Black women are and when possible are all deserving to show and spotlight the things that they’re doing in their communities. One of those ladies that continues to be a change maker is the founder of major Knox Adventures, cyclist, and runner Keshia Roberson. Keshia is a student of history and understanding the importance of understanding where we come from all the while making sure we stay educated with black history. In turn she is moving mountains to make sure we all have a voice in this fitness community and creating an avenue for all of us here. This month’s feature Keshia Robinson gives us some insight into her fitness journey, Major Knox Adventures, her running and the 1928 NYC to DC bike ride which for me I had no clue about until reading about it, prior writing this article.

MSM: As runners we all tend to only look at the current, where we currently are in our fitness journeys but one thing, we like to do here at Mid Strike Magazine is tap into the past, present, and future. We always look at the before when it comes to our fellow runners. What we’d like to do is tap into the founder, the woman behind Run 4 All Women Keshia Roberson, for our readers let’s get a peek into your background. I like to ask the question of how did you find running and/or fitness?

Keshia: The beginning was back in high school. I wasn’t a strong runner at all. I could barely make it around the track one loop without feeling like I was going to pass out. My teammates used to think it was a fun idea to have the whole team, including field athletes, do 4x4s for fun. I hated it. I had a legit fear of the 400. I had found my niche as a jumper and it’s where I wanted to remain. However, when I got to college, I started to challenge myself to grow beyond that fear. Starting with one lap, then two, and so on. Then I went from one mile to two and then seeing how much faster I could go. I used to feel a lot of anxiety and depression (names I didn’t have for my feelings at the time) and running seemed to help me process them. The runner’s high I became addicted to.

I got away from running after college until about 2014 when I once again found myself in a deep hole of depression and living in a new state feeling lonely. A friend suggested that I look into Black Girls Run! As a means of making friends and getting back into running. For a couple of years, I ran with them bouncing between group runs in the Baltimore and Washington, DC areas. There was a run just about every day of the week. That eventually led me to joining District Running Collective and from there it was a ripple effect. Running led me to triathlons, triathlons led me to cycling, and now I play in both the running and cycling spaces.

MSM: What really piques our interest is the word grassroots, for me this is very important as it's a word I like to use for MId Strike Magazine. Being a digital magazine and having the experiences of understanding the struggles of the black every day runner allows us to stay low to the ground and relate to runners that are essentially like us. Why is this important to you and what are some of the things that you’ve done to help you continue to be true to who and what you are as an organization?

Keshia: Simply: It's hard to build a movement when you don't know or understand who's in it. If we listen close enough, people will tell us what they want and need, directly or indirectly.

I am usually steadfast in the type of experiences I want to create and who they are for - which I've had to be. I've had so many criticisms and things I "should do" thrown my way. Had I listened to them, I would've never co-organized my university’s first Pride Week in 2008, hanging the Pride flag in the school's rotunda - a bold move that lit the campus on fire! I wouldn't have created the weekly Track Tuesday’s series in DC that went strong for 6 years. I wouldn't have joined Run 4 All Women, which I eventually went on to co-lead. I wouldn't have founded Major Knox Adventures or started the 1928 Legacy Tour and its virtual challenge, nor would I have insisted on the Chocolate City Community Ride being for who and what it has been.

However, I have had to be open to the needs of the communities I aim to serve. That means that sometimes I must adjust my approach or dial back ideas to make for a better experience for those otherwise marginalized or undervalued in these target groups. Each time, though, the impact has been influential. Running taught me how to believe in myself, dig deeper when needed, and that it's okay to shift for the most significant impact. Running also taught me the value of firmly creating spaces for people to feel seen and valued.

Oftentimes when Black history is considered it’s filled with darkness and struggle. While these are elements to our story and important to know, joy is also a part of its full narrative.


There’s knowing Black history then there is being a student of Black history and understanding the effects of all our struggles then using that information gained to teach others. It’s one of the ways to create generational change. This is very important because we are at the age now where our elders, our grandparents won’t be around much longer so much of the unwritten history that our elders have internalized will be lost. It’s essentially up to us to carry those stories and legacies and pass them down to our younger generations. Keshia over the years has made it a point to do just that all while continuing to be a student of Black History.

MSM: I want to hang here for a second as we touched on what you’ve continued to do to be true to yourself, but we have to discuss another thing. Being a Black Woman in America which to be quite and literally honest is one of the most difficult things to do not only in this country but around the world. You have shown how strong you are and continue to be and have gone on to launch and create Major Knox Adventures. As a black woman that is also a change agent how does it feel? I’m sure you've had to work extra hard in the past to show and be represented properly.

To continue reading please subscribe to the magazine, or login to your subscriber account below.

Start typing and press Enter to search

%d bloggers like this: