London Run

Adams Taking Her Talents Overseas For A Cause

Brooke Adams is all smiles after crossing the finish line at the Lucy Town Half Marathon last October in Jamestown.
P-J file photo by Scott Kindberg

Brooke Adams is all smiles after crossing the finish line at the Lucy Town Half Marathon last October in Jamestown. P-J file photo by Scott Kindberg

For the first time in her accomplished running career,

Randolph native Brooke Adams has taken her talents across the Atlantic Ocean and will take part in the London Marathon on Sunday.

She will be one of about 50,000 people in the field.

It will be Adams’ fifth marathon in the World Marathon Majors Series. After London, all she will have left to compete in will be the Tokyo Marathon in February 2018. She is in the running to be the youngest person to ever complete the World Marathon Majors Series.

But her efforts this weekend will have a truly special meaning, because she will be running for the Multiple Sclerosis Society. Adams’ father, David, was diagnosed with MS in January of 1998.

In this October 2016 file photo, Brooke Adams shares an embrace with her father, David, after she was the top female finisher at the Lucy Town Half Marathon in Jamestown.
P-J photo by Scott Kindberg

In this October 2016 file photo, Brooke Adams shares an embrace with her father, David, after she was the top female finisher at the Lucy Town Half Marathon in Jamestown. P-J photo by Scott Kindberg

“When I first found out, I was nine years old,” Adams explained on her fund raising page on justgiving.com. “My sister was six and my twin brothers were five. My whole family didn’t know what MS was. For five years, my family traveled to Cleveland monthly for my father’s treatment. … One time my dad almost passed out trying to speed up his treatment by unclasping the IV bag so we could get to the zoo earlier. He’s a selfless man who always put his family first.

“In the summer of 2013, I randomly ran my first half marathon in a friend’s spot who couldn’t do it,” Adams continued. “Before this race, I never raced more than a 10K. With the time I ran, another friend pointed out, ‘If you could keep that pace up for 13.1 more miles you could qualify for Boston’. Later that day at a family picnic, I shared my half-marathon experience and my new goal to run a marathon and qualify for Boston. I remember a family member doubted me and was laughing about my goal. I was hurt, but I’ll never forget my dad’s response: ‘Don’t tell Brooke she can’t do something, because she will put her mind to it and do it.’ That night I signed up for the Erie marathon.”

Since then, Adams has ran more than 10 marathons and her father has been there for most of them.

“He’s honestly my biggest fan,” Adams said via email. “There are a lot of days I don’t feel like training or running, but I think of him. In races when I want to slow down, I think of him and the rest of my family wondering where I am supporting somewhere on the course, then I try to pick up the pace. I set out a goal last year to complete the World Major Marathon Series. This list is made up of the biggest, fastest, and best marathons in the world: Boston, New York City, Chicago, Berlin, London and Tokyo. I completed four out of the six (three in under three hours) and London would make number five. I cannot express how excited I am to pursue my passion while raising money for charity that’s so close to my heart. There has not been a cure for MS yet and I plan on helping until there is. He truly is my hero.”

The trip to Europe conveniently corresponded with the two-week spring break at Randolph Central School, where Adams teaches. Her visit has included stops in Dublin, Ireland; Barcelona, Spain; Edinburgh, Scotland; and London.

“Training has become an every day habit and most of the trip has been during the taper part of marathon training, (which means) less running and more carbs,” Adams said of her journey. “I have ran every day here and it’s my favorite way to explore each and every place I visit.”

Her favorite running spots so far have been along the beaches of Barcelona and at St. James Park in London.

And when it comes down to it, Adams is certainly looking forward to toeing the start line Sunday.

“(I) absolutely cannot wait for this Sunday,” Adams said. “I was bummed missing the Boston Marathon which is only six days before. But I want to complete the World Marathon Majors soon and this was a great opportunity to (compete in) London. … This race means so much to me. It’s my first time ever running for charity and it means so much to me that I’m running for the MS Society. In order to have a charity spot, it’s competitive.

“Most races I do I am guaranteed a spot because I meet their sub-elite time qualifications,” Adams added. “London is different. … Automatic time standards only apply to residents of the United Kingdom. I applied to the MS Society with an application as well as an essay about what running for the MS Society means to me. Over 1,000 candidates applied and only 100 were offered spots, I was the only American. Being offered a spot, I committed to raising over 2,000 (pounds) for the MS Society. My family, friends, and my community were amazing and within a few weeks I met the goal. I have raised over $3,000 so far. This race isn’t just me running. … It’s my friends, family, Randolph and my father running with me.”

Notes: In other local running news, 60-year old Jamestown native Barb Crowley competed in the Boston Marathon this past Monday and crossed the finish line with an official time of 4:25.49. … The official website for the MS Society is www.nationalmssociety.org/.

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