As Thanksgiving is around the corner I was thinking of all that I am thankful for and how we are all taught lessons in life through both the times of emotional highs and lows.
First I am forever thankful for my Faith and God in my life. Without him, his presence, and the courage he provides…I would not be here today.
Second, I want to thank all of my dear friends in all your capacities for being there for me through everything I have been through. I truly have the best friends in the world and each of you inspire me to be my best.
I am also so thankful for the gift and ability to run. Something as simple as putting one foot in front of the other, repeatedly, has kept me not only physically able to withstand the adversities but has provided a mental outlet and endorphin high on multiple occasions. A true gift.
I am thankful for my health. I have been dealt some difficult cards but because of Faith and Belief I have overcome beyond what was imaginable. Someone recently asked me how did I overcome the adversities. I simply said attitude. I can definitely have an attitude (some of you should be thankful you have not witnessed my hard headed, stubborn, and competitive attitude) but I also have a very optimistic and positive attitude. You need both to overcome adversity. I simply refused to let someone’s inattentiveness take away my passion. (I was hit while cycling by an inattentive driver changing a CD) It wasn’t going to happen, running is not just exercise to me, it has greater meaning. I am thankful for how God directed me into a running store shortly after college graduation. That is how it all started…
I was out applying for corporate marketing positions and came across a running store called Run On. I was frustrated with job searching and figured I would go buy something to motivate myself to workout that afternoon. Within days I was working at that running store and had found my true passion, HELPING OTHERS.
To this day I have spent 9 of the last 11 years working in the specialty running store environment and I am so thankful that each day I wake up, I am excited to go to work. It is not only a passion but a way to pay back to the running community that has provided me so much through the years. Therefore I am thankful.
Soon I will be starting to raise money for Neurological Research and Treatment for Barrow Neurological Institute, the location where I had 3 major spine surgeries and was given back the ability to live without constant pain. I am forever thankful to the team that treated me and especially towards my Neurosurgeon, Dr. Randall Porter.
I tell the kids I coach that as you grow up, life becomes a little more challenging, just like that last mile in the race. But with Faith, perseverance, and a positive attitude…you can accomplish your wildest dreams.
Some of my wildest dreams are coming together. I will run the Boston Marathon in April and will run my first ultra marathon in May. I am training daily with the guidance from the best and am thankful for each step I take.