My name is Michaela Correia. Several years ago, I was told I could not run as I have scleroderma, a rare auto immune disease. Everyone always asks me what that is. I run because a few years ago, I was told I had the lungs of a 70 year old and needed to take it easy. I started by walking around my living room at night when kids went to bed, and slowly started jogging. Then I started slowly jogging outside. Eventually I walked/ran a 5k with friends. Then two years ago, I decided to sign up for my first 10k.
Shortly afterwards I started having chest pain, and was sent to a heart doctor in which I was terrified. So far, I felt I had been lucky with scleroderma. I did an exercise stress test and nailed it! I told the doctor I was thinking about running a 10k, and I will never forget the feeling when he said, "you could do a marathon with that heart!"
It turns out my gastric issues were just a lot worse than I knew, but I can handle that! So I signed up for The Colony Half Marathon! It was an amazing experience crossing that finish line. Since then I have completed three other half marathons, a full marathon, and several 10ks and 15ks. I try and schedule one race a month, and love pushing my awesome Facebook group of #healthychics to run with me. They keep me motivated!
I run because someone once told me I couldn't. I could have used Scleroderma as my excuse to not run, instead I use it as my superpower. Everyone has their own battle or excuse. I just want people to see that you can turn that excuse into a superpower that pushes you! #whatsyours
I look forward to coming back this year, and hopefully beating my time from last year!
I really just want to show people that anyone can race. It is all about believing in yourself.