Proving My Strength, and Coming Back for More!

By Rob Banaszak on April 6, 2012 in Team To End AIDS

by Lawrence Bernal,
Team to End AIDS Athlete

Last year was my 10th year of living with HIV and I had decided to do something just to prove how strong I was. I had decided to run a marathon. As I was thinking this I was flip’n through the Washington Post Express and had came across the T2 ad. Talk about divine intervention. I got online and signed up for the Chicago Marathon and there was no turning back. I now had 1000 more reasons on why I needed to finish what I was about to start and didn’t even know it.

It was such a great feeling of knowing that I wasn’t alone. Knowing that I wasn’t the only one dreading getting up at 6:00 AM just to go running and actually looking forward to it. Knowing that I wasn’t the only one who was having aches and pains from the previous weeks run. Knowing not to worry if I had forgotten my “goo”  because your running mates always brought extra.  Knowing that we were all doing this for one common goal. Helping those in need and fighting AIDS.

So this year I’m back and have decided to make the goal extra sweet. I’m not only running the Chicago Marathon, but also the Honolulu Marathon and the Luray Triathlon. I know you’re thinking I’m crazy, but after several months of training you start making connections. You start making friends. You have literally joined an extended family and what’s crazy is NOT coming back and being part of something special and fighting the great fight!

So, until there is no longer a need or until there is a cure I’ll be back year after year. Running for myself. Running for those who can’t and running for those we have lost.

Can’t wait to see old faces and meet some new ones. See you out on the course.

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