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KPF Makes History in "The Grand Daddy of Them All"

KPF Makes History in "The Grand Daddy of Them All"

The 241st birthday of the United States was historic in more ways than one as nine Push Assist teams, representing the colors of the Kyle Pease Foundation, participated in  the "Grand Daddy of them All", the iconic Peachtree 10K Road Race. 

To take you back through the history of KPF's involvement in the Peachtree, we must take you back in time to the year 2013 when Brent and I made history as the first Push Assist team to participate in this historic race. One year later, race organizers, The Atlanta Track Club (ATC) and the Shepherd Center, granted us a second bib as Brent and I were joined by Justin Knight and Brian Resutek as participants. Now in 2017, through the continued support of both ATC and the Shepherd Center our numbers have blossomed yet again. 

"As we waited to start, Matt of Infinity Yoga, turned to me and said, 'Dude, we have the whole row.' It's amazing to think that in 2013 it was just us. Now it's beyond that. It's bigger than us. It's a collective We and one we are so proud of.  Together WE Wheel!"                                     ~Brent Pease

As I've shared on several occasions, the reason this race is so special to me is because it takes place right in my own backyard on the very streets that I call my home. From the moment the starter's pistol sounds to mark the beginning of the race at Lenox Square Mall to the point where  runners make their way down Peachtree Road, through the streets of Buckhead and Midtown before finishing in beautiful Piedmont Park, the Peachtree can be summed up in four letters...H-O-M-E!

The highlight takes place as we race by the Shepherd Center, where many of the patients line the streets and cheer us on as we make our way past this incredible facility. The Shepherd Center specializes in spinal cord & brain injury rehabilitation along with medical research as the top rehabilitation hospital in the nation, so it is apparent why they cheer on the KPF athletes so feverishly. Another highlight for me is when we whisk by Piedmont Hospital, where I've been employed for many years. Patients, staff and many dear friends come out of the hospital to cheer for Brent and I, as well as our other push assist athletes. My heart swells with pride as we pass both of these top-rated facilities. 

Brent and I finished third in the men's division with a credible time of 39:18. The men's division was won by Ricardo Aranda and Matt Shechtman, while second place was awarded to Justin Knight and George Darren. The push assist women's division was won by Naomi Hicks and Carrie Smith, while the coed division was won by Aiden Jackson and Carmen Brahmin. Winning participants in each of the push assist divisions were awarded  cash prizes by the Kyle Pease Foundation to acknowledge their accomplishment. 

We look forward to next year and the opportunity for KPF athletes to participate in America's Largest 10K. As always, our goal remains spreading the message of inclusion from sea to shining sea. 

Before we blow out the final candle on our country's birthday cake, let me take a moment to remind you to apply for the Jake Vinson Family Grant and to register for Camp Wheel Away. These are two of the highlights of our organization and we hope to make both opportunities available to as many families as possible. 

Until next time-Together We Wheel....

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And the Winner of the Inaugural Assisted Division of the Peachtree Road Race is...INCLUSION!

Ricardo and Matt win the Inaugural Assisted Division Peachtree Road Race.
PHOTO BY JORDAN D. HILL/JORDAN.HILL@AJC.COM
Hello K Peasey Nation...If you think the weather has been hot during the month of July, the Foundation schedule has been scalding. 

KPF started off the month on America's birthday with Atlanta's iconic race, The Peachtree Road Race, the largest 10k in the entire country with over 60,000 participants. That's a lot of athletes!

Peachtree even has a wheel chair division which was made up of 62 athletes this year. Brent and I have been working very hard along with the Atlanta Track Club and The Shepherd Center to create the first assisted division in the race's long and historic history. 

The inaugural assisted division was made up of five teams with the winners being Ricardo Aranda and Matt Shechtman who finished in a blistering time of just over 38 minutes. 

In an article published by the Atlanta Journal Constitution, Matt thanked Ricardo for his reassurance as "Schectman’s endurance weakened over time".
“Ricardo is an amazing lead and he keeps pushing me the whole way. He talked me off the ledge and kept me going. He’s an awesome puller.”
He continued, “The Peachtree is all about inclusion,” Schectman said. “Sixty thousand different people out here with 60,000 stories.”
It was a very historic Fourth of July with fire works all through the day and a perfect day to celebrate both independence and inclusion. What a perfect pair as in many ways the two travel hand in hand. 

Two days after Peachtree, Brent and I packed our suitcases and hit the road in the KPF RV with a final destination of Muncie, IN for the Muncie 70.3 1/2 Ironman.

It was great to see some familiar faces on the course each of which inspired us to a personal best of 33 minutes for the 1.2 mile swim. We followed that up with a great bike portion of 3:56 for the 56 miles ride and followed that up with a very solid 1/2 marathon for a personal record of 6:28:00.  

We can't thank KPF athletes Tina and Naomi Hicks enough as they made their way to IN to support us. 

Brent is participating in his own full Ironman race this weekend in Sonoma Valley, CA at Vineman. We will be rooting him on and encourage him to spend more time on the course than in the vineyards. 

We are getting ready for a very busy schedule with the Lekotek Fun Run on August 13, a local triathlon on August 27 and then the People's Marathon aka the Marine Corp Marathon on October 30th in the Nation's capitol just a few days before the presidential election.  

Don't forget to check out our site for information about Bowling with Kpeasey, The Jake Vinson Family Grant and of course, Camp Wheel a Way!

As always, Together We Wheel!

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KPF Schedule Is As Pretty as a Peach (Tree)

It seems as though I start off each blog post with the same general sentiment and that is to say, "It's a busy time of year for the Kyle Pease Foundation and our calendar is filling up by the week." That's because it's a busy time of year for the Kyle Pease Foundation and our calendar is filling up by the week.

We had a record breaking turnout for the Virginia Highlands 5k and everybody seemed to have a great time including new and veteran athletes alike. Now we turn our attention to the largest 10K in the United States;  The Peachtree Road Race which just happens to be in our back yard of good ol' Atlanta, GA.  

We so excited that the Atlanta Track Club and the Shepard Center has allowed us to compete in the race with bibs for five teams. Just a couple years ago, Brent and I were dubbed as pioneers as the first assisted team to run this race and now thanks to these two organizations we have grown five-fold.

We have a whole weekend of happenings and this is one of our biggest fund raisers of the year. Greg and Christy Smith have graciously opened their home for an evening of fun that will highlight the Peachtree Road Race and The Kyle Pease Foundation. We are so grateful and excited to share the gift of inclusion with some amazing people. Thank you to the Smiths for opening their home to our foundation. 

Join us in our friendly bet where KPF Fans can wager to support their KPF favorite team at our website. This is a fun way to support KPF while cheering for your favorite KPF team.  

The Monday following the race, Brent and Kyle will hit the road for the 70.3 mile Half Ironman in Muncie, IN on Saturday, July 9.

So as stated earlier, it is a busy few weeks.  As always don't forget to apply for the Jake Vincent Family Grant and to sign up for Camp Wheel Away.

And do not forget, Together We Wheel. 

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The Peachtree Road Race Through the Eyes of the Athletes

As Brent and I have expressed on many occasions, The Kyle Pease Foundation was created for a far bigger reason than for me to see my name in lights. Any of you who know Brent and me are  aware that KPF was formed to allow others to experience the same feeling of joy that we feel every single time we compete. Witnessing smiles on faces is a very greater feeling than collecting personal press clippings.
 
From the very first race, we experienced a feeling of accomplishment, a sense of belonging and the ability to experience what it feel like to compete after living much of life viewing from the stands. To share that feeling with other athletes is an incredible gift to be able to give.
 
It gives me equal pleasure to turn the blog over every once in a while to the athletes of the Kyle Pease Foundation allowing them to share their feelings with our loyal readers.
 
This week, it gives me great pleasure to hand over the blogging reigns to Justin "J-Dude" Knight and Matt Shectman, who experienced the Peachtree Road Race together earlier this month. I know you'll be inspired by their words.  
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Through the Eyes of J-Dude:  This was my 2nd year running the Peachtree Road Race.  I was so excited to have lightning speed Matt pushing me.  I knew it was going to be a great race with my buddy Kyle.  It was an early morning, it was raining, but I didn’t care.  I was ready. 
 
After getting settled in the racer, we headed to the start line and we were all smiles.  Of course I still had to talk a little smack to Kyle and Brent along the way.
 
 The race started and it was so cool.  I was cheering Matt on and blowing my air horn as we blazed through the streets of the ATL.  We were so fast that the water station volunteers didn’t even have time to set up before we were flying past them.
 
I loved cheering Matt on and I could hear the crowds cheering us on as we flew past.  What an awesome feeling to be racing neck and neck with Kyle and Brent.  It would crack me up as we would pass them and then they would pass us. 
 
I think the funniest part of the race was at the finish line when we were running so fast, we were drenched, the road was so wet that we actually couldn’t stop.  To quote Matt, we did a “Flintstone stop”. 
 

Racing with KPF gives me a feeling of happiness that no other sport does.  Running these races helps me to feel that I can do anything I set my mind to, and has helped to build self confidence that I had lost at one time. 
 
I am forever thankful for everything that KPF is and will be!  I can’t wait to race again at the upcoming triathlon and IRONMAN FLORIDA!
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Through the Eyes of Matt: About two months before the Peachtree Road Race we were contacted by the Kyle Pease Foundation about potentially doing another event for the Foundation (we had done some great stuff with KPF over the past year, so it was time to up the ante a bit).  
 
Given everyone's interest in running and what better event out there than the 4th of July, we all decided that we should do a big event for the Peachtree Road Race.  It was my first experience pushing an athlete for KPF and so I was a little apprehensive, but once we got the ball rolling with Lululemon and KPF, there was no turning back!  

All of the events and fundraising leading up to the main race on July 4th were amazing.  We had such great support from our students, the KPF donors, and so many more people.  It was truly incredible to be part of.

By the time a rainy July 4 morning rolled around, it almost
seemed surreal, like the event was finally happening.  We were so thrilled to be out there and I couldn't help but put a smile on my face happy to be a part of the race when it was clear that Justin and Kyle were ready to go and compete!

Even though the rain kept the crowd turnout pretty low over the early miles, we were amazed by the turnout at the Shepherd Center and toward the finish.  I don't think I've ever pushed so hard in a race, and I was sore for a few days afterward, but reveled in all the fun and hard work put forth by everyone involved.  

It was a truly special time for me and for all of us at Infinity Yoga.  We are truly blessed to be part of such an amazing organization!

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