The Vivid Girl became inspired to do the run during her late father’s battle with cancer. Diagnosed in 1999, her father Jaspaul Singh passed away on July 26 after spending the past four months in intensive care.
“I actually signed up to do it sometime before June. I just really wanted to raise money for my father who was in the hospital since March 31,” Leone told XBIZ. “He fought with all of his heart and might to make it. He had esophageal cancer and cancer in his lymph nodes. It was supposed to be a pretty simple procedure of hopefully finding a cure, removing his esophagus and part of his stomach, and rewiring his whole digestive tract. I know it doesn’t sound simple, but he struggled with a lot of issues, you name it he had it. He had pneumonia, liver failure, kidney failure, infections in his blood. He just went through the gauntlet.”
She continued, “He fought really, really hard and didn’t want to give up until the end. He was in so much pain, every muscle in his body.”
In addition to raising money for cancer research, the American Cancer Society’s DetermiNation endurance event program generates funds that are given directly to individuals stricken with the disease.
“So we’re actually helping a person with this. When you’re watching somebody over the course of four months just struggling to breathe, running 13 miles is nothing by comparison,” Leone said. “My partner Daniel Weber is on the team, so it’s just the two of us. But anyone else who wants to join the team I would love it. It means we would raise more money and more awareness.”
The popular star said she has been training regularly for the past two months.
“I’ve never run 13 miles before in my entire life. I played sports growing up but never something like this,” Leone said. “But running a half-marathon is not about how fast you get to the finish line, it’s about having the endurance to make it there.”
The owner of SunLust Pictures and former Penthouse Pet of the Year said she has been running at some local hiking trails to get ready.
“You have to condition your body to be able to go three to four hours of running and walking, and not a lot of people can do that,” she said.
The half-marathon starts in Griffith Park and finishes at the L.A. Convention Center. “You start doing the mental map in your head and you’re like, ‘holy smokes that’s far,’” Leone joked.
Her next big feature movie is called “Gia: Portrait of a Porn Star,” which was produced by SunLust and will be distributed by Vivid Entertainment/Pulse later this month.
“I love it. It’s been my personal project for the last six months and there’s been a really positive buzz about the movie,” Leone continued.
“Everybody loves the trailer so I’m hoping they’ll like my film. There are eight sex scenes in it so it just doesn’t get any better than that. … People can fast-forward to the sex but I’m hoping people will actually watch the story.”
To make a donation to Leone’s Team Jaspaul or to join the half-marathon, click here.
“I’m excited that I’ll actually get to meet the people that we help with this,” Leone said.