Entering a marathon is a worthy goal for anyone, whether you’re a highly trained athlete or a more casual runner. But running a marathon is nothing short of a miracle if, like Peri Finklestein, you were told you’d never walk.
Born with a form of muscular dystrophy, Peri was told at an early age that she’d never walk, and no amount of physical therapy could help her. But Peri and her family were determined to prove her doctors wrong, which is how Peri wound up at the 2016 Miami Half Marathon with an incredibly admirable goal: to cross the finish line after taking 1,000 steps.
Leading up to the marathon, Peri explained how she’d take on the challenge: “You don’t think about how your feet hurt, or your back hurts. You think about who you’re doing it for and why you’re doing it.”
Peri, her family, and 450 of her closest friends (why yes, she is super popular) made the trek from New York to Miami to witness Peri’s miracle walk in action. Her team raised $62,000 for a camp for kids with medical challenges. When it came to do the actual walking, Peri not only propelled herself forward, but did so while dragging her ventilator, which weighs about 10-15 pounds.
But nothing could weigh Peri down. Watch the video below to see how this inspiring teenager went above and beyond her goal to complete over 1400 steps. Take that, doctors: