Running away from cancer

If you would’ve told me just a few months ago that I’d be running a half marathon this year, I would have laughed at you. And then if you would’ve told me I’d be doing it as a way to celebrate my birthday? For fun? Yeah, forget about it.

Since we’re on the topic of birthdays, I want to backtrack to my 25th birthday for a minute. It wasn’t exactly exciting because I spent the entire day in my car travelling from Wyoming to Virginia, but I didn’t care because it was supposed to be the best year ever. I had just accepted a new job that I couldn’t be more excited about, I was going to be living much closer to family, and I couldn’t wait to enjoy my summers at the beach. I felt like I was on top of the world. 

A cancer diagnosis about 6 months later quickly turned what was supposed to be my best year yet into the worst.

My following birthday wasn’t any better. I rang in my 26th year on this planet with my 9th chemotherapy treatment. With that said, I’m long overdue for a good birthday and I have a feeling 27 may finally be my year. My upcoming birthday, October 7, also just so happens to be the same day as my first half marathon, the Crawlin Crab in Hampton, VA. 

Running 13.1 miles wasn’t something that I had ever wanted to do. In fact, the morning before I committed to running a half marathon I actually told a friend of mine that I would NEVER do something like that and I didn’t understand what the appeal was. I thought people who run distances like that were nuts! Fast forward just a few hours to that afternoon when I was meeting a different friend for coffee. This friend just so happens to be a running coach. With that said, we were not meeting to talk about running at all. I actually just needed some life advice and we ended up having a great conversation. Right before we were about to head out, the topic of running came up. He told me about a training team he coaches and invited me to join. The catch? I had to pick a race to train for. The available options were a 5k race, a half marathon, or a full marathon. This friend of mine is incredibly motivating and at that instant, I let go of all my opinions on running that I had expressed just that morning. Without hesitation, I decided that I was going to start training for a half marathon.

Since then, I’ve been strictly following my half marathon training plan and getting myself ready for this race. I’ve faced more than my share of setbacks, but I never let that stop me. You WILL see me crossing that finish line this weekend and it’s going to be the best feeling ever. Not only is it a great way to ring in my 27th year on this planet, I also can’t think of a better way to prove that cancer didn’t win.

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58 thoughts on “Running away from cancer

  1. It is awesome to see my prayers have been answered for you! Run the race and enjoy the day ! I am very proud of you! Happy Birthday early 🎂🎉

  2. You got this girl. You didn’t let cancer beat you and now you can do anything you put your mind to. So proud of you.

  3. Crystal, not one ounce of doubt that you will excel and it will bring one more important milestone to you. We will all be watching and wishing you a birthday to remember for all the right reasons.

  4. Early Happy Birthday Crystal! Congrats on your training… I have also felt that “why would someone do this?” when thinking about a half or whole marathon! In my experience, there aren’t many challenges that fill you with feelings of pride, accomplishment, satisfaction as a distance run! It verifies you can run tough and keep going when all you want to do is stop!
    Have a great race.. and a great birthday… you have earned it!

    1. You are so right. Running also is very therapeutic in a lot of ways and I feel so mentally strong after finishing what seems like an impossible run. Thank you so much for the kind words!

  5. Happy Birthday! I’ve been a fan of yours since you first walked on set at WVEC. I have followed you since your first post. I believed you would “kick cancer’s ass” and you did. I believe you will exceed not only in this half marathon but in anything you strive for in life. You are an inspiration to all. You go girl!

  6. I know you can do this! When you start to drag a bit remember all you’ve been through, & conquered! You Got This! Good luck!

  7. Best of luck and good wishes to a very strong cancer survivor! You share the same birthday as my daughter and turning the same age as my granddaughters. There are many 7s in the wind!
    Best of everything to you, Crystal and in all you do.!
    I enjoy you each and every day on air!!

  8. Congratulations,I’m still having radiation side effects but I want to go back to the gym.This recovery from this is slow at my age.Prostate cancer can really set you back.but good for you,I hope it goes well!

    1. Being active was the single best thing I did to help my recovery process. It’s tough sometimes, especially mentally if you’re not able to do what you used to be able to like me, but I highly recommend getting in there and doing what you can. It really helped me so much and I hope it helps you too!

  9. Crystal
    I passed you last weekend on my bike on General Booth when you were running. I didn’t realize it was you till you passed me. Good for you to continue to move forward from the big “C”. I did a stem cell transplant 9 years ago with my brother at MCV. He had some hard times just like you but 9 years later he is happy to be alive and trys to do good for others. Good luck on your run and hope to see you again.

  10. There is no way you AREN’T going to do the half marathon! You are an inspiration to not only cancer survivors but everyone who has followed your journey.

  11. wishing you all the best crystal. you have come so far in beating this horrible disease. . you can do this. keep up the fight. you are an encouringing person to help others who are fighting this disease. <3

  12. You’ve have come so far in the fight for your life! You have showed a us an example that we should NEVER give up the fight! You’re a winner! Live your life to the fullest ! God bless You!

  13. Good luck on your birthday and race day. Have fun with it. My favorite part of a run? When I finished

  14. Way to go, Crystal! Can’t wait to see you finish this race and start training for the next one.

  15. Congratulations Crystal! Following your odyssey has been depressing at times, educational and, now that you are past cancer and on with your life, positive. Hope you have a great race and a wonderful 27th birthday.

  16. I know you will accomplish this goal. You are amazing and I have a feeling you will accomplish anything you set your mind to. Never stop!!

  17. This will be your year Crystal!!!! You have turned your scars into stars and we will
    celebrate on Sunday! You will cross that finish line and it will not matter what your time is because you said yes….. and you did it!!! You are the storm!!!!!! Watch out world….. here she comes 😘💚

  18. Crystal you’re an inspiration to us all. I enjoyed keeping up with through your Blog. You’re such a Beautiful Woman inside and out. I will tell you I do miss your blond hair. Please change the color my Beautiful Friend.

  19. Congratulations you warrior you! Have fun and we are looking forward to seeing you cross that finish line!!

  20. Happy early birthday, deserve a good one! How is your Mom? Great seeing you back on the weekends!

  21. You continue to be such an Inspiration Crystal, and words do not do justice to the emotion.sent behind the word Inspiration. Best of Everything for you as you approach your 27th Birthday. Thank you for continuing to share for us in Cheyenne.
    May God continue to Bless you.

  22. Good for you, Crystal! You WILL cross that finish line! And, you will have a Happy Birthday!
    Love watching you on WVEC weather.

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