Alex participated in her second race thanks to Inclusive Racing yesterday! Just like the Richmond Marathon 8K she did in November, the weather was less than desirable, but even though it was raining you could definitely not dampen anyone's spirits!
A HUGE, HUGE thank you to Team Alex - Cassie, Rob and Tommy.
It's pretty humbling to me to have people volunteer their time and energy to make a difference in someone else's life. Running is competitive, everyone is always trying to better their time and to have people forego that just to make someone else happy is a pretty fantastic character trait in my book. I can say thank you a million times to the Team but it never seems to be enough.
Considering Alex does not like to sit still for any length of time, she was pretty content for the most part and patiently waited for the race to start.
Once we headed off to the course she gave a little sampling of her happy squeals and according to the team she really got into in around mile 2!
A few last pictures before she headed off to run in Wave E!
We covered her legs and feet with a poncho to try and keep her as dry as possible but she kept finding ways to uncover her feet - the last race her feet were so wet and cold it literally took 2 days for her feet to warm up!
Once she was off we hung around the starting line for a little bit watching all of the runners - I think there were 38,000 people registered for the race.
And Zach was being quite silly!
Rob called me when the team was less than a mile out so we would be ready to watch them cross the finish line - I had my phone in my hand but didn't hear it or feel it vibrate for some reason. I was super impressed that not only did he leave me a voice mail, he also texted me! Luckily I looked at my phone only a minute or two later.
Team Alex finished the race in and impressive 54 minutes, despite Alex wanting to play the let me take my sneaker off as many times as I can before they leave it off game - so much for trying to keep her feet covered!
Warning - if you watch the video - you may want to turn the volume down on your speakers - I was just a little excited and yelled a little too loud :)
Crossing the finish line!
A race well run!
This happy face says it all :)
What a GREAT Team!
Alex and Tommy - Notice the missing sneaker :)
A little post race pep talk from Ms. Sarah
A very big thank you to Sarah because she is the one who introduced us to Inclusive Racing.
As soon as the race was over the rain started to get heavier so we didn't stick around for any of the fun festivities that were going on. One little girl was wet and very tired!
We had a little bit of hike to get back to the car so by the time we got there Zach was a little less than thrilled by how wet he was :)
But as usual, he was a trooper and super supportive!
I don't think we were home 10 minutes before she was changed and completely passed out - running is exhausting :)
I'm just going to steal what I wrote in my last blog post about how I felt when I saw her name in the paper because the sentiment is still exactly the same:
"Alexandra Hayes. Not Inclusive Racing, not Team Alex, just Alexandra Hayes. And while I wouldn't have minded if it was listed like that at all because it was such an incredible day, for a moment in time she gets to be in all her glory as just Alexandra Hayes. For all the people reading the results on Sunday morning all they think is, cool, some girl between the age of 10 and 14 named Alexandra Hayes ran an 8K. Good for her. No mention of a disability, no mention of a wheel chair, no pictures of her braces or the stroller, just Alexandra Hayes. A simple name with some numbers, but such a huge story behind it. And something so taken for granted, means so, so much to me."
SO THANK YOU INCLUSIVE RACING AND THANK YOU TEAM ALEX - ROB, TOMMY AND CASSIE - our day would have been nothing without all of you and your hard work - and we are grateful!