They say the brain is a muscle that needs exercise, and Sarah Searing agrees. Of course, it's hard to get a contrary argument out of someone who runs marathons.

"Running was always something you could do alone to just relax and de-stress. And if you wanted, you could do it with friends or a team," Searing said in the office of Stamford's Tutoring Club, where she is the executive director.

In 2009, she laced up her shoes and hit the streets of New York for its namesake marathon. While she enjoyed the 26.2-mile course, the training regimen is a little more than she can commit to for the moment. So earlier this year, Searing ran a half-marathon in Philadelphia. In a couple of years, the 24-year-old says she would like to try another full race.

"It's just unbelievable when you are out there, and there are just so many other people running with you," said Searing.

To help share those experiences, Searing volunteers with the New York Road Runners to coordinate youth runs. After-school races help get the kids involved and moving.

Searing left school with a degree in education and teaching certification for seventh through 12th grades. With the tight job market, she began tutoring while looking for a position in a school system. But she's stuck with it, though one day graduate school may snatch Searing away. In the meantime, mathematics or a marathon, she's happy to help exercise young minds.