You know what is tough? Running with constant pain or debilitating illnesses that constantly get in your way. You know what is worse? Getting knocked down and having to be even stronger than you were before to pick yourself back up to be tougher and continue fighting. That is where I am at right now.

You all know me best as the Scoliosis runner, and I always will be. But did you know I suffered a small stroke a few months ago? I haven’t been the same since. My balance is off when I walk times and I have had so many MRIs done that I lost count. They keep coming back abnormal with things that are showing. I have also suffered a few seizures that leave me unsure of what my day will hold.

But skipping forward 4 months, I tried doing some walking and slow running. Let me add that I now have a medical alert dog who lets me know if I have a seizure, a migraine blackout, fibromyalgia flare up, or a headache on the horizon. She is my sidekick.

I tried running on the treadmill at home to be safe and near my dog, Lyssa in case something were to happen. She has alerted me or kept me off of it on some days. Sometimes it went OK, others not so great. But a few days ago I felt I was well enough to run outdoors for the first time, alone.

When I say everything flared up…..everything flared up. My back hurt so much, it went down into my arms. My migraine was so bad it…..let’s just say it was agonizing. I came home and logged off for the next few days.

I then tried again today, at a much slower, easier, less aggressive tactic and it went worse. I just kept telling myself over and over that I am strong enough and that I could do this. All I had to do was 4 miles. I was pushing myself to complete, what used to be for me 4 miles and now I can barely do it.

I think that once you fall and you have to pick yourself back up, that it is much harder to do than facing obstacle after obstacle. I’ve done both and right now I’m dealing with the toughest one yet. While giving up is not an option, it sure is making hard to get back up.

But I am willing to go that EXTRA MILE because since I was a kid I have stared adversity in the face and made is through each time. It seems to be getting tougher and it is taking a little longer for me to get back up, but I eventually do. Today, I ran 4 miles, taking the EXTRA MILE challenge. Why don’t you join me?

To commemorate New York City’s biggest race, ASICS and Runkeeper have partnered with a non-profit organization, Girls on the Run, to promote self-confidence and healthy lifestyles for young girls through running. Since the average Runkeeper workout is about 3 miles, they are challenging runners to go the #ExtraMile and run 4! Complete this anytime between October 17 and November 30, and ASICS will donate a pair of running shoes to Girls on the Run in YOUR honor.

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Click here to join the challenge

Today I took on he challenge, not only for Girls on the Run, but for myself. I know I am much stronger than I give myself credit. But I am also forgiving on my body. I have been through a lot these past few months and I am trying to take it easy while being understanding that one cannot just bounce back from a small stroke, seizures and now having to live with brain disease for the rest of my life on top of my Scoliosis. So why don’t you join me and take on the EXTRA MILE, if I can do it YOU certainly.

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I will always keep smiling and always keep trying because nothing is impossible and I will never give up.

-gelcys

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