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Katie Friedlander

Katie Friedlander


Katie started her journey in 2008. "I had always been overweight. I was picked on and bullied my whole life. I was always trying to fit in, have people like me. I would soon find out that making people laugh was my gift, however more often than not the jokes were pointed at me and my weight. My mom died when i was 23, it was after this time that my weight really went up. I started smoking pot and binge drinking as well. When I would drink there would be no social aspect. Well it started out social, but then I would over indulge and then end up sick and wondering why I started in the first place. About a year after my mom died, I had reached a all time high with my weight. I was too heavy for a conventional scale. It took about 3 months for the scale to move so I would assume my weight was about 320-330. I would go up and down losing as much as 90 pounds 2 times before I came to a place of surrender. August 2008, my birthday month. I weighed myself and it was 294. I did not want to be 300 pounds again. I was alone, depressed, hopeless and thought i was destined to be fat. Drinking had really excelled during this time as well as my marijuana use. On August 31 I had my last drink, and on September 20 i went to my first meeting.
"I started my journey in October of 2008. I lost 120 pounds in about a year, this was from changing how I ate only. I did not start exercising until a year after being in recovery. I was overwhelmed with everything that I was changing, and did not want to lose my way. It wasn't until almost 3  years after being in recovery that I wanted to try running. I never really wanted to run, it was a punishment for me. I played softball throughout my life and we had to run laps if we did something wrong, or to warm up. I hated running. Ha. I had met someone who was heavy and she had said she had completed a half marathon, and was training for a marathon. She did not fit the stereotypical runner in my eyes. She was just a regular gal. I then decided that I wanted to run, I signed up for my first 5k. This was 2011. The path to my first 5k was hard. I could hardly run without dying. I used the couch to 5k app. I was impatient because i wanted to be able to run right away and that didn't happen. I remember my first completed mile on the treadmill, it sucked, but it was amazing all at the same time. I remember the week before my first 5k calling my friend crying because i could not run more than 10 minutes without stopping. My first 5k I ran the whole thing, and did not stop. I ran a few more 5ks that year and then graduated to 10k". Katie got married in 2012 and ran her first half marathon in Jan of 2013. It was at this moment that she had a let down that almost put her back into the clutches of her disease. This is where Katie needed something more. "Running had really taught  me that I could do anything. I was just holding myself back. I started going onto virtual facebook running groups on facebook and was connected with runners who were just like me. Not elite runners at all, just regular men and women. I shared my story, inspired my friends to run and built up quite a community for myself" She has since run about 15 or so half marathons and ran her first full marathon in May. "I have realized that running has brought me to a new level of my sobriety and recovery. If I did not have running, I would not keep going on this path. I am not fast, I do not run everyday. Sometimes I do not like running. But I think everyday that I look at what my recovery has done for me, the one thing was it brought running into my life, and with that many people who i love and who i can not imagine my life without. I am  currently training for my 2nd and 3rd marathon. I am a real runner, I am a miracle and no one can tell me different!"
The finish line is just the beginning!!!!