Thursday, January 22, 2015

Young stroke survivor finds strength in determination

Photo from the U.S.
Centers for Disease
Control and Prevention
Are we all destined to run after a stroke? No. BUT, I still like stories like this because they do illustrate that after a stroke, determination is often key.

If you've visited this blog before, you'll know that was a runner before my stroke in 1998, started running again several weeks later, and continue to run. People, though, have different outcomes - physical, speech, vision, etc. - and not everyone can run. In fact, as the last post noted, stroke is the most common cause of permanent disability in the United States.

But the story is more than running. It's about a stroke survivor who found strength, a story that can echo in other lives. People might have different levels of abilities and strengths, different disabilities, different challenges. The important thing is to keep those challenges challenged.

So, here's a link, an excerpt and a video about a young stroke survivor finds strength in running:
And once Varda started running, he says, “It came back, I was pretty fortunate that it came back pretty quick. I used play a lot of tennis and softball. Those don't work as well. I grew up playing baseball, I can't even catch a baseball anymore, because it... I can throw, but the ball just kind of hits and the reaction time isn't there with the glove."
But the running?  His body remembered. He says, "So, about six months, that's when I started running again and then November of 2009, so 11 months later, I ran a half marathon."
What happened is not all that typical; many survivors have much more profound deficits.  Varda says, "I was just very, very fortunate in my recovery. It was fun to be able to do it. But it does take a lot of hard work. I'm very, very dedicated to it. It's not like I jump out of a chair one day and I'm running a half marathon the next day.  There's a lot of training in between."

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