Thursday, August 23, 2012

Seattle and More

My good buddy Ben, who also chairs the board for the Kyle Pease Foundation, asked me to go to Seattle and watch his team participate in an ultimate frisbee tournament.  This was also a good opportunity for me to see one of my aides, Carla, who I have not seen in nine months since she has been on rotation for her PT school there.  I was also able to reconnect with my friends, Noa and Julie, who I had not seen in over 11 years.  

I met Noa and Julie at a United Cerebral Palsy camp in Connecticut when I was 14.  This camp was one of the first times I was away from home, and Noa took me under his wing.  We developed an awesome friendship.  I went to their wedding and visited them a couple times in Boston when Noa was in med school.  

Back to Seattle...I was in my manuel wheelchair, so Noa had to transfer me quite a bit.  There was a lot of laughs and a lot of screeching the first couple times.  But by the end he was a pro's pro.  We saw some major attractions of Seattle such as the Space Needle, a tour of Safeco Field, and, of course, Gas Works, a beautiful public park.  It was so good to see everybody.  It was just like old times.  

This past weekend was also exciting for my Foundation as our Board of Directors got together for a weekend retreat.  We’ve made a lot of strides since our inception a year and a half ago and it’s been on display a lot over the past few months;  we’ve had a number of kids participating in various races locally under KPF and just last month sent Christina Young to the National Junior Disabilities ChampionshipsWith our weekend retreat, we spent time getting to know each other better and worked with a third party facilitator to help us focus our efforts and make sure we’re operating in the most efficient way possible.  We’re already seeing some great results and are excited about the growth of the Foundation.  More to come soon!!

We are about to enter the fall portion of our season, which started this past Saturday with a nice little 4 miler.  I was actually second place male in the 25-29 category and 5th place overall!!! No wheelchair division needed!  After that, we will take some more time off while Brent does his Louisville Ironman.  Please wish him well as he has trained for this for almost a year.  I know he will do great.  I will be tweeting live from Louisville, so make sure you are following Walking With KPeasey on Twitter.  Thanks again for all of your support.  


Tuesday, August 7, 2012

National Junior Disability Championships

Hello everyone! My name is Christina Young and I am one of the athletes that is a part of The Kyle Pease Foundation

Thank you, Kyle Pease Foundation, for being my first ever sponsor for such a great event! On Wednesday July 25th, I got the opportunity to travel to Mesa, Arizona for my last Track Junior Nationals (NJDC) thanks to The Kyle Pease Foundation. I traveled there with my team, the Georgia Blazers, a team with 5 other athletes and two coaches. My team and I went to compete in the 100, 200, 400, and 800 meter races as well as field events consisting of discus, javelin, and shot put.  We also had 6 swimmers there before us who competed and got firsts in 30 events out of 34. So already our team was doing great. 

The squad
 It was Arizona, so it was always hot, but so was the competition! I was kind of nervous at first, but I found out that I was still fast. I've been to about four NJDCs in my life and every year I would come in the top three. So this year I was nervous because the other girls in my events had faster times than me this year. 
The first events I did was field. I had to miss shot put because my coach misunderstood something. So I ended up only doing discus and javelin. Well after some issues with equipment, I got all firsts, but no personal records. But I was totally fine with it since field isn't my forte. What I was ready for, was track. 

Before the Javelin and rocking some KPeasey Blue of course!
The next day was the first day of track events. It was so hot in AZ that track was during the evening/night, so all day we hung out at the hotel and relaxed by the pool before the first and only event that day, my favorite event, the 100 meter dash.  When I got there I started getting nervous, but no one could tell. All the the other girls in that event thought they'd beat me with the times they had this year.  Well they sure were in for a shock, and so was I. I ended up getting first place and beating all the girls with a time of 19.54.  I was so shocked my self. I had no idea where it came from. 

Not slowing down for any camera's :)
The next day was the 200 and 800, the events that I did for my high school team in the spring. I ended up winning both of those out of all the girls in all the wheelchair heats. With times of 2:29 for the 800 and :35 seconds for the 200. Again, I was so shocked! It was so unbelievable. Then the next day we did our last track event, the 400, a one lap sprint. I ended up winning that as well and beating every one with the time of 1:10 seconds. 
All in all, I won every event as well as had all season bests. It was great. That week also helped me make a very important decision in my life that will effect my future. I chose to do track and racing in college. I already will be playing wheelchair basketball at the University of Illinois on an athletic scholarship. So now I decided to do both sports and train as much as I can to hopefully make it to the Rio 2012 Paralympics. 

Was so surprised and happy to receive this!
The last night, we had a banquet where awards were given out. The Georgia Blazers won the third place for the large teams. This was one of our biggest awards. 

I really want to thank The Kyle Pease Foundation for sponsoring me on this trip. It was truly a life changing week that wouldn't have happened without the sponsorship. I also want to thank BlazeSports for all they have done for me in the past years. I am truly blessed. I really can't wait to see what other amazing things happen with Walking with KPeasy and the Foundation.