- To do for others that can’t.
- To give each other a lending hand.
- To give someone something to smile about.
- To develop a special connection with others.
This is all the backbone of Ainsley’s Angels.
We have all seem them at the beginning of a race. Generally it is one Angel Athlete Rider with a disability to a team of three Angel Runners ready to push and cheer their rider to the Finish line. I saw them recently at our local Mardi Gras Mambo race and thought how inspiring. I never thought possible that I could be fortunate enough to help participate as an Angel Runner. That is just for the elite runner right? Nope! If you can run and have the positive energy to support your rider than Yes, you can be an Angel Runner.
I heard of a local race event coming up that they would have a presence the Amazing Half/5k in Baton Rouge. I signed up on the Ainsley’s Angels site under my state as a runner and reached out to the chapter head. He was very responsive and encouraging to join the team. For this event I would be joining the team of #TeamNika with 4 other Angel Runners (all women)
We were ALL actually newbies but Nika wasn’t worried. She was a pro. She had done the Rock ‘n’ Roll New Orleans Half! This would be a piece of cake for her. We got a quick tutorial on her bike (The front tire does not swivel so you have to be careful on turns and stay towards the right of the course for runners to pass).
Soon we were at the Start line ready to kick off the race.
This would be an easy out and back 5k. The cloudy morning fortunately kept the rain at bay. I got to start the race with my buddy Francine. We took turns pushing Nika who made it super easy. I had looked up some advice on how to run and push at the same time (you concentrate on not twisting your hips too much, use the power of your legs and keep your chest forward. If you buddy up with one person pushing on each side alternate your arms that you are using to swing).
Jennifer, Emily, Sarah, Francine and I kept about an easy 10min pace and got Nika to the Finish line in 32:31. I would run with these ladies anytime!
I highly recommend you checking out Ainsley’s Angels and signing up to be someones Angel. A special “Thank you” to Nika for letting us join you today!
For more info check out : http://www.ainsleysangels.org/