Sunday, September 7, 2014


I apologize for the choppy writing ahead. I want to put this out there, but it's hard to find the right words.

My uncle was in an accident while training for his A race on August 21st. He was on a long ride when a car hit him and fled the scene. He's been in a coma since. I have few words to describe the shock and sadness I feel. He is my uncle, he's family... but, he's also my partner.

Years ago Uncle Tracy roped my dad into training for his first sprint triathlon. They've done many marathons together, and my uncle is extremely enthusiastic about training, well really life. He has the ability to get people around him excited about his interests. So, my Dad, Tracy, and Aunt Elaine did the TWU Sprint tri. I was just a spectator. The excitement of the race and new tradition sucked me in. I trained with dad and Jake and we did it the next year. Since then, we've often talked about training. I haven't really been serious about it, but with every small race I did, my uncle was there to cheer me on.

So, why QBKS?.. Well, Dad and I did the HH100 in August, and during our training we coined the phrase QBKS. "Quit B*tchin' Keep Spinning." Of course, I had to make a t-shirt about it.. Tracy loved the story, and he thought the shirt was really cool. I told him I'd send him a shirt too. But, he said, "no, I can't wear a shirt unless I'm part of the joke (team)." This family is really strict about earning gear. You can't wear a shirt of a race you didn't participate in, and you definitely can't wear a shirt if you haven't done the distance. You absolutely cannot wear the race shirt to the race! You can't wear a shirt about an inside joke, if you weren't in on it. Therefore, he didn't earn a bicycle QBKS shirt. However; when I decided to do the Cowtown Marathon, my uncle decided he'd join us. I may have put a little pressure on him to get back into marathon shape. So official training began, and since October 2013, I've text my uncle almost daily about training. He encourages me, challenges me, makes me laugh, and pushes me to get those PR's. During our conversations we realized QBKS stands for many things. For the run: QBKStriding. After months of training, he definitely earned his spot on Team QBKS.

We finished the marathon and moved on to tri season. QBKSwimming, QBKSpinning, QBKStriding. I let everyone know about my goals before 30 and decided to go for it this year. Tracy wanted to do Austin 70.3. So, I registered. It's our race, it's been the center of our conversation for months, it's what we talked about the very day he had the accident. We already picked our hotel, and now I don't even know if I'm going to do it. I know he'd want me to finish. He told me multiple times how excited he was to see me cross the finish line. But, I have no drive. I don't want to train, I don't want to do this race without him. I pray and hope he wakes up and we can talk again. I want to thank him for all the encouragement, and for passing on his enthusiasm to me. I miss talking to him, I miss my friend, I miss my training partner.

He also talked me in to adding crossfit to build speed and strength. So, of course, I did. If Tracy's doing it, I'm doing it! (Same goes for the whole Apple Cider Vinegar) New training routine called for another shirt. QBKSquatting. Nailed it. 

We also talked about many other things. Usually as it related to our training.. "missed work out bc I'm sick".. "I'm emotionally drained from foster paperwork and blah blah".. He is always so encouraging about big and small things. Thank you for being a God fearing man. He is a light to everyone in his life.

Text from Tuesday and Wednesday before his accident. We found out some frustrating foster information, and as always, he was so encouraging.

**I began writing this post last week and just couldn't finish. So, tonight I will share my thoughts. My uncle is still fighting and improving every day. He has made some major strides this week. My aunt is really trusting the Lord and she's doing well *So proud of you Elaine, love you.* I am so glad he seems to be coming out of the coma. Praise the Lord! For updates check out Search: Tracy Hays.

I will leave y'all with this. I rode for the first time Friday and I cried off and on. I felt like I couldn't quit the race, and I also didn't want to do it. I was very torn and emotional. I was riding with dad and he was very supportive. He said he would keep training and there was no shame in sitting out this race. I've decided I'm going through with it. I'm intimidated by the distance at this point because I'm definitely behind in my training plan and I'm still emotional. However, there is still time, I've worked a new plan, and I'm going to finish the half ironman October 26.

Leaving y'all with one of my favorite photos.

Keep fighting Uncle. QBKS.

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