A Message from Jenny, the Running Thriver

 Jenny after Hartford Marathon 2011

Jenny attended a My Avenging Angel WorkshopTM in 2011 and has been thriving ever since!  She will run the September 13th Ironman Challenge Cedar Point Race in Ohio as a fundraiser for CT-ALIVE, a non-profit agency supporting free workshops for women who have been abused.

Here’s Jenny’s plan and purpose for the Race:

“I have always been someone who dreamed big and chased impossible goals, but it is still hard to wrap my mind around where this crazy Ironman journey has taken me. When I jumped head first into the world of triathlon, I didn’t know the first thing about swimming or cycling. In fact, I was deathly afraid of putting my face in the water.

In spite of all this, I still wanted to do an Ironman distance race.

I never could have imagined how much a single goal could change my life. My transition from runner to triathlete has truly been an example of “it takes a village.” I have found the most AMAZING role models, coaches, friends, and community along the way. My life is richer in ways I never could have imagined, and it makes all the hard work I’ve put in that much sweeter.

However, the reason this event means so much more to me than any other goal I’ve attempted to date runs deeper than the past two years. For me, this race is about CLOSURE.

Long before I met my husband Adam (aka The Love of My Life!), I was in a relationship with a man who put me on a pedestal, and then systematically picked apart my self-esteem. I spent over five years of my life being manipulated and degraded by a man I thought loved me. It wasn’t until he put his hands on me that finally I realized how wrong I was. Leaving that marriage was THE HARDEST THING I HAVE EVER HAD TO DO IN MY LIFE. The shame, embarrassment, and self doubt that linger after abuse are something no women or person should have to deal with.

When I left, I spent a long time trying to decide what to do with my rings. I easily could have used the money on something to make my life easier while I was starting out on my own; however, I wanted to use it for something significant. It was important for me to find a way to turn the negative into a positive. Ultimately, I sold them to buy a road bike with the intention of someday doing an Ironman.

THAT is why this event is so important to me. Challenge Cedar Point is my comeback for every time I was told I wasn’t good enough and couldn’t handle any little thing. More than that, it’s a strike back for every victim of domestic violence who has been made to feel less than. Everyone deserves to be loved, dream big, and feel safe at night.

I was lucky to have the resources available when I needed them most. Now I push my physical limits to make sure other women have the same opportunity. Every year I pick my most difficult race as a fundraiser for CT Alliance for Victims of Violence & Their Families Inc. (CT-ALIVE) in an effort to give back to the organization that helped me take control of my life again.

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(CT-ALIVE supports My Avenging Angel Workshops provided free of charge to women who have been abused.)

I will not ever allow another person tell me I can’t or that I’m not good enough; and I hope I am setting an example for other women and victims of abuse to do the same. The only limitations in life that matter are the ones we put on ourselves.

Please consider supporting my cause and making a donation to CT-ALIVE so that they can continue to provide free services to other women who desperately need them.”

Jenny
CT ALIVE Board Member

For more about CT-ALIVE and to make a donation, please visit www.ct-alive.org.

For more about Jenny, the Running Thriver, visit her blog at www.runningthriver.com and Running for the Color Purple.