Like the stars, which you don’t always see, but you know that they are there!

an excerpt from “Because of My Guardian Angels”
by Francesca Alicea

Just as every sunrise and sunset has its uniqueness, every runner has theirs. The remarkable Nelva, the “little” runner who I thought had given up on running, only to discover that she had been “secretly” training for her first Ultra race also has hers.

When I first met Nelva at ARC, she reminded me of my two children who are about the same age. Missing my two who were off exploring their horizons, I instantly felt a bond with Nelva as well as other young runners in the run club.  In my own way I guess I was trying to fill my “empty nest”.

Nelva did not make many of the Thursday runs so I thought she had lost interest in the sport. When I joined the GP Night Runners, I was ecstatic to see Nelva again.

On many occasions she’d run alongside me always pushing me to give it my all. I knew she just slowed down for me, but that did not matter much. It was breathtaking and I felt good running along with her, (pretending I could keep up with her) just to listen to her escapades and stories of all the mountains she had climbed.

Here I thought she’d given up on running, but she had moved on to greater distances.  She was training for her first 50-mile Ultra Race.  At first, I thought “don’t do it Nelva, that’s a lot of miles”.  Then I thought, “Wow I totally admire that tenacity and dedication in someone her age, or of any age for that matter”.

To my surprise she did it and finished with the biggest smile. Then “Fifty Mile Smile Nelva” totally took it to another level and soon became “One Hundred Mile Smile Nelva”.

I’ve not seen much of Nelva lately. I’m sure she’s training for even longer endurance runs.   But I can still feel her reassurance and the purist of friendship, which are irreplaceable and by far most important. 

She’s like the stars, which you don’t always see, but you know that they are there!

FAN VOTING is open until Friday the 3rd.
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