BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — Kyle Robidoux wakes up each day, puts on his sneakers, and runs.
“Folks with all different abilities can do what you need to do but you just have to adjust and adapt and be creative,” said Robidoux, from Boston, traveling to the area to talk with people at the Olmsted Center for Sight.
Robindoux learned he could do anything he wanted to, as long as he adapted, a few years back after being diagnosed with a progressive eye disease called retitatis pigmentosa when he was 11-years-old.
“For years I thought I couldn’t run anymore because of my vision,” said Robidoux who says he pushed the diagnosis out of his mind and admits he didn’t deal with it in a healthy way. “At first, I started walking and then running for a minute. When I didn’t fall or trip anyone, then i started for 30 and 45 and two hours.”
This past summer, he ran for 28 hours straight during a 100 mile race.
Local runner and Olmsted Center for Sight employee, Carl Tausend, ran 12 miles the morning he Robidoux for the first time.
“It was interesting,” said Tausend, who has completed two marathons and is training for a third and a triathlon. “It was fun to meet someone else who is legally blind and does marathons.”
Robidoux runs with a lead, a sighted runner who he remains tethered to the entire time. Tausend does that for some races but is running the Buffalo marathon without a tether.
Both athletes say they feel able and free to any anything they want when they’re hitting the road and running.
“I feel free and my mind can wander,” said Tausend. “I don’t have to worry about anything. i just run.”
“We are all facing different challenges but at the end of the day we an all continue to do what we want to do regardless of ability.”