Asia Ford may have finished this race last, but she was still the total winner
Monday is significantly more bearable now that I have Asia Ford as a role model. Why is she my role model? Because she refused to give up. Although Asia came in dead last at the Rodes City 10K run in Louisville, Kentucky this weekend, she was the big winner — finishing the last two miles even when she didn’t think her body would make it. With a little help from police officer Lieutenant Aubrey Gregory, Asia completed the 6.2 miles, making it pretty much impossible for any of us to say, “I can’t,” ever again.
Asia — wife, mother, and all around rockstar — has struggled with weight her whole life, weighing, at her heaviest, close to 474 pounds. When her husband lost a limb due to diabetes, she knew right then she had to change her lifestyle so that she could be around for her children.
She told WHAS11 news in Kentucky, “That is when I woke up and I couldn’t allow them to be on this earth without my help and the only way I would be able to help them is if I helped myself first.”
She started to workout and joined a boot camp with some friends Her weight began to drop rather quickly, and she’s been getting more and more in shape ever since. Her most recent big goal was to finish the 10K race.
“It’s been a struggle because nothing is easy in life,” Ford told WHAS11, “It’s been a lot of teary-eyed moments, but I know I want it for myself.” Just remember those words — “I know I want it for myself” — when you’re trying to motivate.
After doing really well for the first half of the race, Asia started to run out of steam around mile four. According to her post-race Facebook update, she says, “I messed up and forgot to eat this morning, Lungs still under construction from the pneumonia and on top of all this at mile four.” Even so, Asia was not about to give up.
The aforementioned, Lt. Gregory saw Asia during the race beginning to struggle and pulled up alongside her in his patrol car to offer her a ride to the finish line. She politely declined. Asia told local reporters, “He asked me if I wanted to stop and I was like, ‘No,’ we have two more miles to go.” So Lt. Gregory got out of his car and walked the last two miles with Asia, hand-in-hand, sharing stories the whole way.
Lt. Gregory knew he was helping Asia, but says he got just as much out of it as she did. He told the Louisville news station, “Your heart starts to fill up, you get those goose bumps and tingles all over your body.” Lt. Gregory went on, “When I watched her approach [the finish line] and I started to hear people scream and I let her go right there before the end and to see her raise her hands, there aren’t words to express the way I felt seeing her be successful.”
Asia took the last few paces with her son, and the moment she crossed the finish line, the crowd burst into screams and cheers.
Not only did she prove to herself she could do it, she’s now inspired millions. Mayor of Louisville, Greg Ficsher posted images of her completing the race on his Facebook. They have been liked and shared thousands of times, and the outpouring of support and encouragement is enough to prove that everybody loves to see somebody else succeed.
As for Asia, she’s thrilled with the outpouring of love and support from around the world. She left the below message on her Facebook page:
Congratulations Asia, we hope you’re celebrating today. You deserve it.