Life often throws unexpected challenges our way, and in 2015, at the age of 53, Alison Ballard faced a daunting one—being diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease. A seasoned triathlete with three Ironman Races under her belt, the news was a shock to her system. How could this relentless disease disrupt her active life? Yet, in the face of adversity, Alison refused to be defeated, taking on Parkinson’s with the same tenacity that fueled her athletic pursuits.
Determined to face her condition head-on, Alison embarked on a new chapter of her journey. While she could no longer participate in triathlons due to her inability to swim, she didn’t let that hold her back. Signing up for road races and endurance bike events, she channeled her strength into every stride and pedal stroke. Her most recent challenge was the Chicago Marathon, a race she had committed to for the Michael J. Fox Foundation. Despite the roadblocks placed in her way, including extremely low blood pressure that made running a struggle, Alison’s spirit remained unbroken.
Alison decided to redirect her training efforts and signed up for the Boston 10K for Women. This event, known for its empowering atmosphere and camaraderie, seemed like the perfect race for her. With determination as her fuel and the support of a community of strong women by her side, Alison is embracing this new opportunity. She acknowledges her nervousness, especially concerning her blood pressure, but her courage shines brightly.
Alison Ballard’s journey is a reminder that challenges can be met with resilience. Her decision to continue racing, adapt to new circumstances, and raise awareness for Parkinson’s reflects her strength like so many women who run the Boston 10K for Women. As she steps onto the course, Alison proves that we can confront our obstacles head-on and take on new challenges, no matter where we stand in the pack.