I just completed my first official race of 2016. Been on a ridiculous roller coaster that I’d like to get off of, but that’s life and all we can is hold on and scream. My health continue to plummet with a recent find of a brain tumor. Three days after that I had to gather the strength to run a race and be strong and keep moving forward. You want the truth? I didn’t want to do it.

I didn’t want to run. Yes you read correctly. I always keep it raw with you all. I felt like my world has been shook upside down because the bad news kept on rolling in. I felt weak, drained and done. I didn’t know what else to do. I’ve never been in this situation before so I didn’t know how to handle it. My mind was being pulled in all different directions but it was always going back to one thing, the same thing, the one thing. The only way I knew how to handle stressful, tough, situations. ย It was truly the only way I knew how to handle it.

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I knew that to get through tough obstacles, you must face them head on and fight. Luckily, I had some fierce warriors by my side to make sure I didn’t lose that. It isn’t easy going through what I am going through but having my family and friends support me make it easier.

I switched gears and got myself mentally ready to run the race. I was running it with one of my best friends who drove hundreds of miles to come be by my side during this difficult time. She had also signed up to do the race. Not knowing what my future holds, not knowing what the next minute holds is a little scary for me but I can’t let my fears keep me from doing what I love. Running has always been my passion, my escape, my power. Nothing in this world is going to take that away from me. Not the Scoliosis, not the Fibromyalgia, not even this brain tumor that could be possibly Multiple Sclerosis.

We readied our infamous flat runners and headed for bed!

 

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Even though this is usually my PR race, this time it was a little different. My only goal was to have fun with Janine and cross the finish line. I was going to run slow and even walk if I had to. Luckily she was OK with it and she didn’t care. She said she was there to support me and be there for me.

At the start line we took and we kept a nice slow steady pace. Lots of people, and the temps started to rise but we pressed on. I was doing OK and was feeling alright. So long as I kept that slow pace I knew I would survive until the finish.

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I was actually surprised I didn’t find the need to take any walk breaks. I was very focused on my pace and keeping it steady. Janine was running with me and I felt that my pace was too slow for her but she assured me she wasn’t going to leave me behind so she stayed with me the whole race.

Started to feel a little off towards the end. Started having trouble breathing. My rotated ribs were really acting up and the fibro flare up was kicking in. With each breath I took it hurt like heck but I was so close I kept going. The pain wasn’t too killer….yet. Here is where I kind of stopped to walk a bit, we talked and had a few laughs. Trying to figure out who’s fault it was for us being there so early sweating and running. You know, typical running friend race conversation.

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I gathered my strength and kept going. This was my 4th time running this race so I was familiar with the course and knew the finish was close. I slowed down my pace just a little more because I was starting to hurt a bit more. But there is just an INCREDIBLE thing about running a race, is when you are coming up to the finish line….the cheers, the roars, the kids holding up signs. It’s a sight that will NEVER get old and will ALWAYS empower you and give you that extra boost of adrenaline to finish.

Even though this was a 6.2 miles race, I take pride that I can do it. One day I won’t be able t,o so I NEVER take them for granted. I celebrate ALL my races and ALL my runs. There are many who can’t run and wish they could run a 10K! So I though of them as I approached the loud crowds.

Then I heard the WOOOO of Alpha. It’s so distinct and I can spot it and I did. Our little man was jumping up and down and cheering us on as Janine and I crossed the finish line. We had done it. We ran out first race side by side, together. We reached our goal of having fun and crossing the finish line.

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All in all, we made memories, we had fun, we walked around afterwards and met up with everyone and enjoyed the post race festivities. Then little man jumped into the Kid’s race at the last minute as they started. Jon told him to GO! GO! As he was the last to cross the start line but he flew so fast he actually came in second place! I am so glad he loves running just as much as Alpha and I. Excellent time with family and friends.

Thank youย Track Shackย for putting on another amazing event.

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Winter Park Road Race

-gelcys

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