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Posts Tagged ‘skiing’

Happy Friday!

A video has been making it’s way around the net about Josh Dueck, a skier who has just performed a back-flip. If you don’t know his story, you might say “what’s the big deal?” Extreme sports have become more mainstream and the X Games were just on TV a few weeks ago. Skiers were doing all sorts of crazy stuff! But Josh’s story is a “little” different.

Josh is an accomplished skier who nailed a back flip on a sit-ski. Yes, a sit-ski. I have watched this video a few times now, and must admit I have mixed emotions. As a mother of a son with a spinal cord injury, I cringed at the idea. Always a “worrier,” I couldn’t even watch Darren play quad rugby at first (now I love it!). I think about the “what ifs.” As a skier myself, I have absolutely NO IDEA how people accomplish jumps, flips, spins and the likes. I am happy to have my two skis on the snow at all times. Just the idea of being airborne would send me right into the lodge! Being the mother of two expert skiers, I know the urge was always there to “push the envelope” as they got better and better.

But now I watch Josh Dueck doing what he loves – skiing, screaming down mountains, taking jumps and flying thru the air. How wonderful to see him doing what he has always dreamed of. Yes, he is using a sit-ski, but does it really matter? What this has reminded me of is that people who sustain spinal cord injuries are still the same person they were before their injury. A quiet, shy person is still quiet and shy. Using a wheelchair doesn’t make him or her a new, outgoing personality ready to work a room. A loud, aggressive person who was annoying is still annoying now. And a daring, adventurous athlete is still willing to take risks, go beyond the limits and see what can be accomplished.

For this, I love Josh Dueck. I love seeing that he is still pursuing his dreams and “going for it.” I love seeing that he has a support team willing to help him reach his goals. And I love that he is sharing his accomplishments.

Perhaps in a future blog post, I will touch on what we DON’T see in the video – what it takes to practice and train for such a demanding sport, the challenges of the clothing, the weather, the equipment, getting to and from the mountains…………… so much we might all take for granted, but is certainly not easy for an athlete with a disability.

For now, enjoy the videos for all they have to offer – and all they have to show us what determination and dreams can mean.

A shorter video about the back-flip:  http://youtu.be/4xjUUf_sK84 and a longer video (which I totally enjoyed) about Josh’s “story”: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/02/08/josh-dueck-sit-ski-backflip_n_1263159.html (this is a longer video is lower on the page).

Happy viewing, and let me know what YOU think!

Cynthia

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Hi Everyone,

I’m back from a wonderful week of skiing at Jackson Hole, and am ready to write again. Sorry for the lapse. While on my ski vacation, I did manage to keep up with my training pretty well. I ran twice and rode the exercise bike once. I was huffing and puffing with the high altitude, but I finished my runs as scheduled. We got back Saturday night, and I did my long run for the week on Sunday, which throws off my schedule a bit, but luckily it was only 6 miles this week. This coming Saturday I need to run 14 miles, and I am hoping, hoping, hoping I can do it outside!

I have continued to follow the “Marathoning for Mortals” program, but have decided to add a strengthing component to my weekly routine. It will not be easy to add yet another thing to my mornings, but I am getting very worried that I am not going to be strong enough thru these next two months of training to make the entire distance. And now, with all that is invested in this event, I want to do everything I can to make sure I am successful. So that will start in the next few days, and I am very excited about it!

In case you don’t know, Team Push to Walk will be participating in the NJ Marathon and Half Marathon on May 1 in Long Branch. If you’d like to support me, or any other members of our team, please visit our website where you can check out everyone who has joined and support us in our efforts: www.pushtowalknj.org. If you are interested in joining us, please let me know! We have about 25 people registered so far, and we’d love to have more!

This week, I’ll get back to dedicating my runs for Push to Walk clients and other people with spinal cord injuries. Being away for a week is always a good thing – enjoying time with my husband, being with friends, making new friends – it’s a good way to recharge the batteries and get new perspectives on things. New friends we met have a granddaughter with progeria, a very rare, fatal disease of accelerated aging in children. Learning about this little girl, her family and their efforts in getting involved with the Progeria Research Foundation was a real eye opener. Living in the world of spinal cord injury can become all-consuming at times, but it is important to remember there are lots of other people out there dealing with their own devastating, challenging situations. Check out www.teamzoey.com and www.progeriaresearch.org to learn more about little Zoey and this disease.

Stay tuned for more client stories – I’ll be writing soon!

Cynthia

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