From Barely Being Able to Walk to a Half Marathon: Barbara Timmons Proves Anything is Possible

Posted on Jun 6, 2024, by

Author: Barbara Timmons

When celebrating my 60th birthday this year, I was excited about the milestone but even more excited to feel better than I ever had in my 50s.

Up until two years ago, I wasn’t much of a walker and I definitely didn’t do any distances longer than a 5K. More often, I could be seen cheering on my husband at his Ironman races or cheering on my son as he ran local races. But after encouragement from a good friend, I realized something had to change. My knees had been hurting and my weight made exercise difficult. Even after moving around for short periods of time before I was in excruciating pain and had to sit down. So how did I get from there to looking forward to the ThedaCare Half Marathon Run/Walk this year?

In 2022, I couldn’t take it any longer and I had to have a total knee replacement in my left knee. Knee replacement surgery is not easy and included a long recovery time with a great physical therapist. He explained that for every one pound I lost I would take four pounds of pressure off of my knee. That small statistic gave me the motivation I needed to keep moving through recovery. I started by walking a half a mile, then a mile, and throughout the past year I’ve been able to participate in 5 and 10Ks as part of my recovery and fitness journey. I found that I really liked listening to music on my walks and found immense peace being outdoors.

With a great support system at my side including my husband, sons, a great physical therapist and many friends – I was able to participate in community fun runs, supporting my fitness goals and eventually losing 100 pounds. My knees no longer ache and my stamina is higher.

And I’m ready for my first half marathon. My friend will be coming to the Fox Valley in September to walk the ThedaCare Half Marathon Run/Walk with me. We know the course is mostly flat, paved and full of community support every step of the way. While I don’t expect us to finish it quickly, I know it will be the perfect opportunity to enjoy one another’s company and the community spirit.

I’m just excited to have a great time, and I hope you join me in the fun!

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