Big disappointment lead to big opportunities

It may be only days away from my last blog post, but I forgot to send it out at the new year!  Since then, a lot has happened.

Great Aloha Run: Monday, February 20, 2017.  Running race, 8.2 miles.  I consider my self new to running, having trained for a year and a half.  I still don’t know how fast (or slow) I should run.  Don’t get me wrong… I am not fast, but I do want to get better!  It’s me racing against myself.  Anyway, I started out at a pace I thought was reasonable, and my pace picked up last at the last half of the race.  I picked 1:20:00 as my goal, and I finished at 1:16:22.  Not too bad for me!  I finished 54 out of 409 for my gender and age group.  They were 13262 participants and I finished 1131st.

Lavaman: Sunday, April 2, 2012.  Olympic sized Triathlon.  I had my eye on this race for a long time since I was determined to beat my time experienced last April.  I got through the swim in record time, for me, anyway.  My first transition was slow, and my bike started fine.  I fought my way through the headwind going out, and going back, was aided by a tailwind.  Then, approximately 2/3 into my bike ride, as I was about to pass another rider, some inexplicable reason, he crashed, taking me with him.

I was going about 25 mph when I crashed, landing in the middle of the highway.  Thankfully, no cars hit me!  I tried to get up to continue (about three times over a space of 30 minutes) but each time, the world started to spin.  I was done.  Not only did I not finished, but my shoulder was in a lot on pain.

I went to medical tent (thank you for volunteering your time!), found out that I’ll live, and told see my doctor early.  Later in the week, I had x-rays on the shoulder.  That explained pain I was in.  I had fractured my three ribs and clavicle!

fractured clavicle

Needless to say, I was disappointed.  Yes, crashes do happen, but still…  I privately and briefly went to self pity mode, thinking about the lost personal best that was lost and “what ifs.”  Still, I worked out to the best of my ability on a recumbent bike (swimming and running were too painful) and then a couple weeks later, it struck me.  Why was I doing this?   To give stroke survivors hope!  My best time was secondary.  My future events were secondary.  I needed that.

Strokes and crashes do happen.  For me, I heard something the other day: God is good and loving, life is hard, and I have the power to overcome.  Am I going the let a stroke and a crash define me?  NO WAY!  True, being a stroke survivor is hard.  Having a crash is hard.  What do I need to overcome?  For me, a good and loving God gives me the strength to overcome, to try again.

So, big disappointments led me to big opportunities.  I have been training in all three disciplines, swimming, biking, and running; stretching myself as my healing body permits, but with increasing attention to other important things, namely, to give stroke survivors hope.

You don’t have to try triathlons.  That’s my passion.  If you can walk, get walking.  If you like a dance, get dancing!  Life is waiting for you!

Stroke survivors CAN!



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