I’ve struggled with injuries and modifications since I had my first shoulder surgery at age 14. That operation had been delayed for over three years due to my age and under the hope that physical therapy would keep me strong enough to protect against dislocation. I learned at a very young age that if there’s a will, there’s a way. I don’t think you’re any less of an athlete just because you can’t do things the same way as everyone else. There are many ways to get the same end result, and I consider myself lucky to have such amazing coaches that are willing to work with me to achieve my goals.
To be honest, my running training leading up to the 5-miler was pretty much non-existent. Prior to this, the most I’d ever run in terms of a race was a 5K, and the most I’d run continuously was maybe four miles (and that was a long time ago!). Basically, the only training I did was CrossFit. The Thursday before the race I went out for a run to see if five miles was doable since I hadn’t ran more than a mile consecutively in over six months. I started at a moderate pace and to my own amazement, just kept going. For 4.5 miles. At that point I knew that I would be fine and that CrossFit had somehow accidentally made me a runner (well, almost).
My future goals hover around the possibility of another shoulder surgery. I would like to be able to someday put my arms over my head (it’s the simple things, really) and get my first pull-up or thruster. Until that day, I’ll be working on my form and doing my best to get stronger. Progress is a marathon, not a sprint…although a marathon may become a goal someday as well!