How Determination and Knowing Her Body Propels Marathon Runner Amy Cargain
How Determination and Knowing Her Body Propels Marathon Runner Amy Cargain

September 15, 2021

Four-time NYC Marathoner Amy Cargain is taking on the challenge once again this year because every mile helps raise awareness for lupus and lupus research.  And for Amy, the Lupus Research Alliance was her number one charity to run for.  “The LRA is home to me, and the staff is like family.  I would only run for lupus.”

Running has always been a part of Amy’s life. As a teenager, she was feeling severe fatigue, achy joints and rashes.  “I would have to miss track meets because I just couldn’t move.  It took about a year of seeing many doctors before I finally was diagnosed with lupus.”

How does she do it?  Amy describes taking “ownership” of her disease.  “Most of the time, running makes me healthier. But when I am feeling pain in my joints, have a fever, my skin is inflamed or I have a persistent headache, I know my body is telling me to take a time out.”

The day of the Marathon, sheer determination keeps her going.  “I focus entirely on crossing that finish line. I keep running to see my boyfriend Dino at the end of the race. I imagine calling my mom and sharing my triumph. I have her spirit running alongside of me the whole way.”

Amy has raised more than $25,000 over the years for research funded by the LRA and her goal for 2021 is $4,000 more.  She attributes her success to people’s belief in her. “I’m often told I’m a warrior and inspiration to others.  I think that’s because I keep going in spite of lupus.  No matter what, I wake up each day and go to work.  I rest when I can and run when I can.”

Amy’s motto is “if I can do it, you can too.”  She recommends taking part in the Marathon in whatever way works for you – jogging if you can’t run and walking if you can’t jog.  However you get there, you won’t believe the sense of accomplishment and empowerment you will feel when you finish.”

Everyone is encouraged to get involved in their own way – cheer from the sidelines, tune in on TV, donate to one of LRA’s runners. “What’s most important is raising awareness for lupus and resources for lupus research.”

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