April 5th, 2020
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New York New York

New York State of Mind

The city that never sleeps. The Big Apple. The Concrete Jungle. City where dreams are made of. Lil Ball and I got our NY on this weekend to celebrate the TCS NYC Marathon. We got to visit the Lululemon in Soho and there amazing post race party! We attended a Halloween party in SOHO House. Forrest Gump and Jenny were a huge hit! That’s my favorite movie.

So much went down in NYC, but not before we were made principals for the day at Seminole Elementary School in Miami. We took over and gave away different types of fun stuff. My favorite part was interrupting each class to talk about the importance of health and doing jumping jacks with the children and teachers. I posted a video of this on my Instagram right before flying to New York.

We stayed just a few blocks away from Time Square thanks to a friend. NYC happens to be my birthplace. It was great to see family. The Knicks are off to a good start. The night we arrived they beat the new look Cavs and are rolling. I’m proud of Tim Hardaway Jr who I’ve worked with and Former UM star Shane Larkin. I’m fortunate to have seen their growth from the time they were in middle school. Hard work pays off.

Sunday was marathon day. It was cold and windy. Being from Miami I have gotten used to running in the heat. I get nervous before every race, even 5Ks, but that morning I was especially worried about a few things. The human body is capable of so much but every human has limits. I believe in living life to the limit and helping others along the way.

On the the bus ride to the starting line I reached one limit and got some help from the bus driver. I had to pee and couldn’t hold it any longer. I asked the bus driver if I could jump out the next time he stopped but that wasn’t an option. He was nice enough to lend me his cup though. I warned the ladies next to me what I was about to do and they already knew. I filled up the cup to the top, spilled it out the door, filled up halfway, spilled the rest out and turned to my crowd and jokingly said “and that’s why they call me Doctor Dribble!” At least I was able to make everyone laugh and loosen up.

Once I got off the bus I felt I was going to freeze. It was so cold and so windy I began to worry about dribbling. I couldn’t feel my hands and every part of my body started to hurt. I met many runners that had seen me in different races around the US and Canada. Aside from the elements of Mother Nature it was great waiting to start the race as I exchanged stories with others. I’m fascinated and have much respect for athletes. Right before the start I picked up a sweater someone had thrown, put it on, and decided to give it a go!

I took off dribbling both basketballs very low to the ground to avoid the wind blowing them away. As we were going across the first large bridge the wind became unsafe. I would never risk my health or the people around me so for the first time ever, I picked up my balls and ran holding onto them. The wind was so strong it was blowing me all over the bridge. As soon as we got to the streets, I heard the crowds roaring. I had to give them something so I began dribbling. It was the toughest conditions I’d ever dribbled in. Gusts of wind would blow my balls and I’d have to get low and dribble hard in order to control them. I actually enjoyed the extra challenge and all the runners beside me and spectators appreciated what I was going through. I came out on everyone’s Snapchat worldwide! I saw kids along the course cheering and I’d entertain them with tricks. One boy even had a ball of his own so I stopped to dribble with him! People couldn’t believe what I was doing and I was thrilled until my body had reached it’s limit.

At mile 10 my legs began to lock up, feet hurt with every step my neck and back felt like they were going to give out from having to run much of it crouched down. I made it all the way to mile 12 but then my achilles started to pull. It was the way I normally feel at mile 25. I completed the Chicago Marathon only a few weeks ago and suffered back, knee, and IT injuries. My chiropractor, Dr. Creed, was very concerned about my health going into NYC and told me not to jeopardize my long term health by trying to prove something. I took his advice and on the 12th mile pulled myself off the course. It was very humbling as I stayed and cheered on runners as they passed by while I waited for Magda to come and get me.

I have nothing to prove. I completed NYC with the basketballs a year ago as well as 9 other full marathons dribbling. Most importantly, I left my mark not only by participating in the marathon but also by doing good things in the community. I raised about $3,000 to help Type 1 Diabetes Research for this race. Magda and I also visited the Henry Street Settlement, a homeless shelter in NYC, where we spoke about goals, hope, and doing things to better themselves. I also put on a little dribbling show for them.

I wish my body had not failed me during the race but I’m proud of myself for trying and making an impact not only on the race but the city. I can’t wait to go back! Congrats to all those that finished and to all of those that tried and gave it their all. I’m not afraid of failure. I’m afraid of not trying. I promise this won’t be the last time I fail as long as I continue to succeed!


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