Wednesday, December 17, 2014
I recently told you about two amazing young men, Brandon Loughridge and Tyler Blanton, who have honored me beyond words by taking on IronMan Texas 2015 in my name. They have pursued this in addition to heavy college work and their other obligations in life with a gusto that is rare to be seen, especially in people their age. Well last weekend, they officially kicked off their commitment by participating in their first half marathon. And they finished it in AMAZING time and in grand fashion. I so regretted that I was unable to be at the event for them and expressed that to them. They assured me that I was with them EVERY step of the way and sent me the picture of my name on their wrists. Wow. Just wow. These boys constantly surprise and amaze me. Not only that, they have approached their commitment with such compassion and devotion that they have drawn the attention of many. They have taken it upon themselves to honor others who face and fight challenges, along with me. They created a Facebook event called “Trace’s Big Race – Team Inspiration” and in just over 24 hours, more than 100 people plan to attend. Hopefully, they will all meet me at the finish line and recognize this amazing accomplishment, not just athletically, but for how many people they have touched and affected by this incredible gift. This goes along with everything we have always said. Positivity breeds happiness, health and a life full of joy. These boys’ gift to me has made me renew my own commitment to push myself a little further in the gym – and in life. I encourage and invite each of you to read this amazing story from the boys’ mouths at www.gofundme.com/fupsvg. If you are able to financially support them in any way, please do. I ESPECIALLY ENCOURAGE YOU TO TAKE THE TIME TO READ THE ENTIRE STORY AND ALL OF IT’S UPDATES. Join us in this journey. Join us in positivity and happiness. Stay tuned for updates on Brandon and Tyler’s incredible journey. And like Brandon, Tyler and me- KEEP DREAMING OUT LOUD! -Trace
Monday, October 27, 2014
Tuesday, July 1, 2014
I know that I JUST posted but while I was posting my new blog, Brandon posted this on Facebook. I have to share. My point is made: I have a dear friend who was diagnosed in 1999 with Multiple Sclerosis, and over the past 5 years I have gotten a first hand look at what it can do to the human body. When Trace came into my life for the first time during my senior year of high school, I immediately knew that our relationship would flourish. My senior year of high school, I had the opportunity to do the CB&I Triathlon with Trace and some friends from school. Not only was it an incredible experience, but an event that had a profound impact on my life. As Trace and I starting becoming more knowledgeable about one another, I slowly came to understand the everyday battle he fights just to live. A year later, I found myself riding and finishing the MS150 with Trace. To this day, that is one of the best moments of my life. To see a man, who is beating the odds against a disease that was supposed to kill him years ago, finish a race that was almost impossible for him. This past year, I found out that Trace's health wasn't gonna let him do it again. It didn't take long for me to commit to riding it for him. This time, I had the chance to bring my roommate, Tyler, along. Again, it was a bittersweet moment when we approached the finish line and saw Trace standing there waiting for us to finish. Before we crossed the line, Tyler and I decided to pull to the side to give him a hug. As tears filled my eyes, I realized how much of an impact we had made on this mans life just by riding in his spot. It wasn't long after the MS150 that I had the chance to sit down and talk with Trace about the one thing that he has always wanted to do. Quickly, he replied: "The Ironman". My mind was blown. My immediate thoughts were those of doubt. After 5 years of seeing what MS has done to his body, I knew that his dreams are slipping out of his reach. After extensive thinking, praying, and conversing with those around me, I knew what I wanted to do. I committed myself to doing Ironman Texas 2015 in Trace's place. My purpose of doing this isn't to generate a response from people, but to do it for a man that I love dearly and the disease that he fights. 318 days from now, Tyler and I hope to cross the finish line and embrace a man that has shown us what the value of life really is. If you're reading this, my hope is that YOU will come along (with support) and be apart of this journey with us. KEEP DREAMING OUT LOUD! -Trace
When we started this great adventure in 2010, I had no idea how much the individuals that joined with me would change and touch my life. I had no idea how deep the friendships that I made would become. I had no idea how much I would enjoy this experience. I am truly a Blessed man. Perhaps the thing that has touched and impressed me the most is how our super-jocks have responded and truly taken me on as their “project”. This year, Brandon Loughridge and Tyler Blanton rode the MS150 for me. They stopped before the finish line to see me and the moment that I had with them is something that I will never forget. After that ride, they informed me that in 2015 they were doing … (wait for it) … IronMan Texas for me! They know that I have always dreamed of doing a full IronMan. Brandon reminded me that we are a team and that he and Tyler were just doing the racing for me and the team. Wow. Just wow. Our young people continue to amaze and impress me. Thank you guys. So very much. KEEP DREAMING OUT LOUD! -Trace By the way, doing an IronMan is NOT cheap, especially for college students. The equipment costs and entry fees are extensive. If anyone would like to help them financially, email me at email@example.com and I will be more than happy to put you in touch with these fine young men.
Thursday, June 12, 2014
I have been so fortunate to have been Blessed with so many TRUE friends. You know – people who stay with you through the good and the bad. People who expect nothing from you except for your friendship in return. People who you might not talk to for years and then, when you do, you feel like you spent time with them yesterday. You do not get to keep your friends just because you made them years ago. You have to earn your friendships every day. That is a privilege. My friendships have given me the strength to continue to fight and beat MS. This goes hand in hand with the positivity that we have talked about for years. Chose to be around people that lift you up and do not tear you down. As hard as it may be, remove people from your life that are not real, true, genuine friends or limit your exposure to them to the extent that you can. It truly makes a huge difference. KEEP DREAMING OUT LOUD- -Trace