Author: Marissa

New Blog New Channel!

Okay this blog has been super inactive, and I have made a big switch in my focus, which prompted a new blog.

I know i know i keep changing thing.

Here are the new places you can find me posting more regularly:



my blog dynamic has shift from focusing on solely running and it’s expanded to be more about the educations of life with Cystic Fibrosis, and my life journey in general, which includes lots of traveling!

I’m very excited to get this started, please give me a look and if you like what you see subscribe 🙂

Wish me luck,




It’s been a while since I’ve updated and for a good reason, nothing has been going on. My health has been pretty poor over the past month and with the cold weather outside it’s been hard for me to get going. I’ve not given up i’ve been doing short walks of 4 miles on average but they’re been slower then average.

I am hoping to get a treadmill in the very near future, I can only hope that it will give me enough time to get my 13.1 miles down. I could really use some well wishes about now!


On saturday evening I participated in Run Disney’s Tower of Terror 10 Mile run. The run started in Hollywood studios parking lot and ended inside the park 10 miles later after looping through the Animal Kingdom gates and the ESPN Wide World of Sports center. I will have a video of the run coming in the next couple days, but for now I’ll write out an overview of the event!

I was placed in corral i one corral above the last one, which gave me an extra 5 minutes or so to start and get going. I was extremely nervous I had been having anxiety attacks on and off all day about the run. The week before I had just finished up a round of IV Antibiotics for Pneumonia and I was still combatting a severe sinus infection. My farthest run since being sick had only been 6.2 miles.

I decided that the best method for starting out was to take it slow. When I attempted the run last year I started by running right away and it took everything out of me in the first mile. This time I would stick to the right side and take the course easier in the beginning.

I reached mile three without a problem! It was a miracle, I had my own celebration realizing I was already going farther then I had the year before. An accomplishment in itself, and while I wasn’t confident I would finish making mile marker three was my minimum goal. The next goal was mile 5.

Mile 5 came without an issue, but I started getting nervous when I looked behind me and I could see the end of the pack.  The cast members on the side of the course let us know we were 1:15 above pace. It made me nervous because it didn’t sound like much, especially not for a walker.

Mile 6 rolled around pretty quick, but I was only 45 seconds above pace and my anxiety was growing. I knew ESPN was around mile 7 and I kept telling myself “If you can get to the trails at mile 7 you can get ahead.”

Mile 7 I was :30 seconds ahead of pace, and I could really see the balloon ladies coming up behind me. This is about the point i started to run. I took notes from Jeff Galloway and I ran in short jaunts and then would walk until I had caught my breath. I tried finding a pace that worked best so I didn’t walk to slow.

I did stop once for pictures during the run, just a quick selfie though:


This is Alan! I went to high school with him, and we did the Fall 2013 college program together. When his CP ended he went full time at ESPN Wide World of Sports.

Mile 8 came slow I kept eating these energy chews that run disney handed out in the bags with the run bibs. They were pretty tasty. Cliff makes them I think and the flavor was Cran-Razz.

We entered park before reaching mile 9 and upon entering the park everyone was cheering because at the point you will no longer be swept, everyone is free to finish at their own pace. This is about the point I started to cry.

I started the day unsure if I would finish, and there I was approaching the end of the line successfully. I had so much anxiety about letting down the people who had been following my journey and letting myself down, but I had done it. 10 miles out of 26.1 were finish!


It is one of the best feelings i’ve ever had. I flew home the next day, and I spent most of today sleeping and I’m still exhausted. I will be posting a video and more details about the run soon! I just had to share!

here are the run stats:

Screen Shot 2014-10-06 at 9.03.42 PM

Lets get back in the Groove!

Today has been a fantastic day! Yesterday afternoon I was discharged from University of Michigan Hospital. Now I will still be on IV antibiotics for the next couple weeks, but thankfully I can do them from home for now. Today I was able to go for my first walk in almost a week. I was nervous that I would have a hard time breathing and that I wouldn’t even make it to the end of the road, but I went a whopping 5k. I did struggle a little so my pace was a few minutes slower then normal, but it felt really good to be out and walking again.



I received the second bit of great news when I got home from my walk. Disney has released the bib numbers for the Tower of Terror 10 mile run in October. I am not the fastest runner and I was honest when filling out my estimated finish time. I couldn’t be happier to find that I have been placed in Corral I, which is the second to last corral. Now I don’t know how long the time between corrals is, but I know that the extra couple minutes that I will get is going to be the make it or break it between my finishing or not. I may have cried from happiness when I found out that I have a serious chance of finishing now.

I plan on training hard core over the next few weeks, and it is my goal to have the minimum 16 minute mile by October for the run. My fastest minute mile so far is just under 18 minutes. I was making really good progress before I got sick and I am lucky to be on a fast track to getting better now. I have a long ways to go ahead of me, but I know I will cross that finish line!

As always,

Wish me luck!

Less then a month to go now

I have been trying to think of what I would write for this post. There is less then a month until the 10 mile run, and I am beginning to feel the pressure even more. Wednesday after coming home from work I made the decision to go into the Emergency Room. I’d been sick for about a week and my condition was getting worse and I knew I needed the treatment. 

I have been in the hospital for a couple nights now. When I was first admitted my kidney’s were in bad shape, but luckily it was only from dehydration and ibuprofen use. I’ve hit a few other bumps along the road the past two days, but I am on the road to recovery.

I am not giving up hope, I still believe I can and will finish my 10 mile run in October. I had been doing around 8k everyday up until last Monday. My last few walks had been getting slower and shorter. I am confident that after I am released from the hospital I will be able to regain my 17 minute mile pace and that I will go the distance.

Between now and then I have a couple work trips, including one to Europe in a couple weeks. It’s not going to be easy, but I can do it!
Wish me luck!

Lets turn 10k into 10 miles!

I know I made the goal to do 7k the other night, well we got storms. So I set out on my mission last night around 7pm. I got to my usual turn around point and decided I would just keep going. It wasn’t long before I had gotten back to the cross roads and I decided instead of going back the way I came, I would go around the big block.

I ended my walk with a record distance of 10 Kilometers or 6.22 miles, and it only took me 1:57. That might not be the most beautiful time, but my average pace was around a 17:50 minute mile, my fastest average yet. The best part of this long walk, was that I really enjoyed it. I finally found a great playlist that keeps me energized and motivated to keep going.

My goal for the next week is to get up to 10 miles of distance. I want to spend the whole month of September working on my pace so that I can confidently go into my 10 mile run in October.

Here are a couple pictures from my walk last night:




This coming saturday I will be participating in the Flint Crim Festival of Races 5k walk. My dad and I will be doing it together, and I couldn’t be more excited! 

Wish me luck!

I’m Back Up and Running

So I took some time off for a wedding, but this week is going to be my redemption. I got back into walking last week and I was really discouraged because I was doing poorly and on top of that I really wasn’t feeling the greatest. Well I did something crazy to force myself into being more motivated and I signed up for an 8k this weekend with one of my friends from high school. We will be participating in the Crim Festival of Races 8k walk this coming saturday. The crazy thing is I also have a baby shower to go to that afternoon it’s going to be interesting weekend. 

To get back in the swing of things I have been working on getting my distance back up. I did a 5k yesterday evening and I was disappointed when it was over an hour (1:05 to be exact). I set out this evening to do a 6k and while I didn’t meet the distance I did do 5k in 55 minutes! I was really excited to have it under and hour and shaving off 10 minutes over night wasn’t to bad. It gives me a lot more faith in my ability to complete my 10 mile run in October. 

My favorite part of my walk this evening though is that I also had my fastest mile yet. It was a glorious 16:37. It might not be an olympic pace, but thats my fastest mile yet! It is so encouraging to see my time improving, it really lifts my spirits from the poor month i’ve had. It’s definitely motivated me to keep going!

Tomorrow’s goal is 7k, which me luck!

Why Do I Run?

I have been asked quite a few times over the past few months why I am running, and I have come to a point where I give the generic response that I want to be healthier. I’ve said that so many times that it doesn’t even seem to mean anything anymore. The reason I am running is because I have Cystic Fibrosis and my lung are failing me. I run because if I don’t keep trying to get somewhere I won’t become anymore then I already am. I run because I’ve lost two friends to this disease and I refuse to sit and wait to be with them again, I will run for them because they cannot.

I have always said that I would never put my name on a charity, that I could never raise money in my own name. It’s always felt like a dirty thing, like a selfish thing to me. What does it mean to raise money in your own name when there are people out their who have no one to do the same for them? When there are people who no longer have the ability to raise anything for others themselves?

I lost two people who I held close to my heart to Cystic Fibrosis. One was completely unexpected and the other brought peace to someone who had been long sick and tired. The hardest part of losing my friends to CF was that they were both younger then I was. Life just felt so out of order knowing that they’d passed and I would continue to live. They say in war when others die and you live you feel a survivors guilt,  I can only imagine that is what it feels like.

I am so grateful for the time I got to spend with them and for the memories we shared. It is my goal to bring justice to their loss, and to put meaning behind it. I will do all I can to help cure this disease, not for myself but so no one else has to lose their friends, or their family.

The last year of my life has been a roller coaster. I started living a dream that was better then I could have ever imagined, and I let it be taken away from me. The hardest decision in my life came from leaving my college program with Disney, I made a decision to put my health 100% ahead of my career ambitions. I have been questioned about that decision, and i have regretted that decision but no matter how angry I get with myself for not being healthier then part of me will always be grateful that I made that tough decision. In the time I left Disney and came home for treatment my health continued to decline and it still is today. I’ve reached a point right now where I am not sure if I will be physically able to complete my marathon in a year goal. I have to say the anxiety that thought has given me is becoming more crippling everyday. It will break my heart if I am unable to accomplish my goal because I will have let myself down, and the people that I am running for.

While the anxiety is building and my hopes begins to darken I know that no matter how many miles I run or how many miles I don’t, that I will still be fighting for them every second. That I will be fighting for myself. I’ve spent a long time trying to be more selfless, and I spend a lot of effort trying to be a kinder person though that doesn’t always work in my favor. I no longer want to be ashamed to say that I am fighting for myself, that I am running just because I want to be proud of myself.

I deserve to be proud of myself.

The Struggle

I have been struggling for the past few weeks with my running. I took a week off because I had to travel out of state for a wedding, and running just did not make it into my schedule while I was gone. When I got home I tried going for a shorter walk just up and down my road and I really struggled to do that. I have been on a couple walks since then and each has left me feeling far worse then I had before. Over the past week I have become incredibly discouraged to the point where it’s been keeping me up at night, and when I do fall asleep I have nightmares about not being able to finish the 10 mile run I have in October. 

Tonight I made the goal to go for a 5k walk, but I hit about 1 1/2 and I had to turn back and head home. I could feel my heart pounding out of my chest and I was in quite a bit of chest pain. I was just so frustrated with myself that I wanted to cry. It is normal for me to be on IV antibiotics to treat my Pseudomonas  every three months and September marks my third month/ I was really hoping that all this exercise would have good impact on my health and help me delay that hospitalization. I am afraid my ambitions were to hopeful and that it may not be the case. 

I am not giving up though, far from it! This is just motivation for me to try harder and keep going! I am sorry it’s been so long since I posted I will start being better about that. I have some cool pictures and a story about the wedding I went to I will share soon. There is actually little about the wedding more about how i got there. It was my first ever train ride! and maybe also my last.

The ride of a life time!

Earlier this week I was granted an opportunity to visit the Michigan International Speedway for a business meeting. I was able to watch a presentation about sponsorship opportunities and with the speedway and one of the racing teams, we also went on a tour of the facility, oh and got to ride around the track with Michael Waltrip. I have to admit I have never been a huge Nascar fan. I love racing but I tend to lean more towards drag racing rather than oval track. Even with my limited Nascar knowledge I knew exactly who Michael Waltrip is.

I was surprised by Michael Waltrips presence, when he arrived at the speedway his people were in the middle of giving a presentation but he decided that he wanted to give a quick word and introduce himself and talk about his Racing team. It was very easy to see the level of respect that he had for his drivers and the employee’s, but the respect they had in return was obvious too. Michael started his speech with a story about his previous day. He was invited to a dirt race the night before over in Winnipeg Canada, he figured that Canada was right on top of Michigan so it would just be a short trip down for the event, well Canada is above a lot of other states too like North Dakota. His short trip turned into a longer one really quick.

It wasn’t long before it was time to hop in the car. Michael Waltrip and Clint Boyer were there to give people an exhilarating ride around the track. I knew right away that I wanted to be in a car with Michael Waltrip, with his reputation and history I knew it would be a memorable and once in a lifetime opportunity.

I have a couple video’s form the experience! One is an in car look and the other is a day at the track overview.

Check out this video to get a quick glimpse at the day!

Check out this video to see what I’m like running around the track.

The car reaches speeds of 165 MPH and we made 3 laps around the track. It was an amazing experience. I was pretty surprised to see a lot of the men and women at the meeting were so nervous and intimidated. Really there isn’t a safer car to be in with all the safety equipment, and a professional driver. I think my history of drag racing gave me a better mental preparation because I wasn’t scared at all, in fact if you watch the video I was ready to go faster.

I couldn’t have been more grateful for this opportunity! I have to send a huge thank you to the Michigan International Speedway for hoisting this event and giving me the opportunity to come out and to the Michael Waltrip racing team for coming all the way out to MIS to give us a great ride! I hope I have the opportunity to do business with both of you in the future.