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Save the Date September 29th 2019
Timing Partner

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Runners' story (2): Defy the odds

 

I am 28 years old, married with three children, work as a translator and

have lived in Berlin for almost 7

years. I have been running for around 3 years. Last year, whilst out running we found our way blocked by the marathon.

We stopped to watch and very casually discussed participating ourselves. At

this point in time I was 5 months pregnant with my third child (still running

10 kilometres a day) and suffering from a congenital brain tumour, affecting my

central nervous system.

 

Two months later, in late November 2004, after the tumour caused the

feeling and movement in my right arm and leg to be lost and made walking in a

straight line almost impossible,  a

second attempt was made to remove the tumour, this time with success. It was

whilst lying in hospital that the vague idea of running the marathon began to

become a fixed ambition. I was forced to stop running for three months

afterwards, until the birth of my daughter early in March 2005. During this

period of forced inactivity, I was learning to walk in a straight line again

and my stomach was getting enormous, so when I suggested entering the marathon

to my running partner she felt secure in saying she’d run if I did too…

 

In late March 2005, my daughter was 2 weeks old and I could start

running again. At first I had difficulty, as my leg didn’t seem to work as it

should, but 4 weeks later I was fit enough to take part in the 1/3 marathon in

Berlin/Potsdam. After this run, our marathon preparations began in earnest,

wearing-out several pairs of running shoes as well as our husbands’

patience. 

 

I have mentioned my intention to run the marathon to friends and was met

with comments along the lines of “you’ll never make it”. Or “you’re insane!”

The strangest comment I received was “you can’t run if you’re feeding a baby”.

Being incredibly stubborn and needing to prove everyone wrong has spurred me on

and made me doubly determined to finish. This is my first marathon and I have

not set myself a time goal. I just want to make it over the finish line.

KATE KOENNECKE

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