FINAL CONTEST SUBMISSIONS
FINAL CONTEST WINNER!
My name is Emma and I am 15 years old. I am a gymnast and dancer from Toronto, Canada. I did gymnastics 4 times a week, competitively for about 7 years. My journey starts in March 2016, when I was diagnosed with osteosarcoma, a malignant tumour that originates in the bone. By the time they caught it, it has already metastasized to my lungs. I immediately started chemotherapy and I was afraid that I would never do a flip again, however when I was presented with the option of a rotationplasty, I chose it over a limb salvage surgery because it meant I would still be able to do all my gymnastics and dance tricks but with the help of a prosthetic leg. During surgery, my knee portion with the tumour was removed, and my healthy tibia and foot were rotated and reattached to my upper thigh, so now my ankle is backwards and function as a knee joint when I point and flex my foot. Today after 2 years, 4 lung surgeries, a relapse, and lots of physiotherapy and learning to use my prosthetic leg, I am getting back my gymnastics skills and working my way back into what I always loved to do!
I hope my story inspires others and I want to show that anything is possible if you set your mind to it! If I can flip with a backwards leg, YOU can do whatever you DREAM to do!
Early 2016 I signed with Team ILR, ran by road racing legend Ian Lougher, for a season in British Superstock 1000. This sounds fancy, but in reality I paid them to ride (thanks to my sponsors!). Still – at the time signing was a dream come true. I’d never been more happy. This dream however unraveled quickly, from a scrapped pre-season test, to missing the first race due to a dead battery, to not getting the coaching from Ian that I expected. Especially the latter hit me hard, as it was the main reason for joining the team. On top of that I never felt at home, we never had dinner as a team, etc. This was starting to chip away at me mentally, to the point where I was quicker without team on a trackday, than with team at race meets. The team and I split with 3 rounds left to go, after two adults over twice my age blamed me for ALL of the issues we had that year. I was heartbroken. I almost quit the sport altogether. Yet I realised something VERY important: a good team doesn’t need a big name behind it. Far more important are a great mechanic and atmosphere. I founded my own team, bought my own ZX10R, and switched to road racing. I am the first and only woman to ever compete in IRRC (European road racing series). I finished 14th overall in the Superbike class in 2017, set a fastest lap, and scored multiple top 10s. At the start of 2018, I finished 21st in my first big international road race. I’m the fastest woman by miles at every road I’ve raced. And this is only the beginning
On the 29th of April 2017, I found myself in a position that I could never imagine before. A typical session turned into a catastrophic accident and a week in the hospital. Turns out, falling from 9ft above coping to your face will result in a dislocated & broken jaw, missing teeth, dislocated shoulder, bruised ribs and a concussion. Throughout my recovery process, being in this position multiple times before, it was hard to not think about the possibilities of hanging up the bmx bike for good. With that, I also had plenty of time to think about all those who I look up to. That alone, with the passion we share was enough for me to continue riding and pushing myself. So now here I am just over a year later riding and enjoying each moment. Acquired a new full helmet sponsor to back my story and my habits as well. Broken bones will heal, quitting never will. Cheers
– ALEX C.
Through life you’ll encounter many times obstacles, people, events that might want to stop your momentum and the way you define YOUR LIFE on YOUR TERMS.
At 22 when I lost my leg…. that was the moment that seemed like everything that I was before would come to a halt.
While my career in the military certainly did; with a lot of effort, positive people around and the will to “Nut Up And Out Ball‘Em” things came to a change.
My doctors suggested to change hobbies and for a while I doubted myself….. But at the end you only have one run on this crazy stream called life so I decided to give kiteboarding another chance…. a hard one!
Disabilities should not define you; how you decide to live your life does. It makes you, molds you and gives you strength. Now days I keep putting my two cents within the military family. I teach fellow veterans how to kiteboard for free within the US with different Non-Profits such as Veterans Adventure Group as well as compete in different kiteboarding events as the only female amputee kiter. I will keep jumping over trees with my kite and keep pushing outwards the misconception, and stigma that disabilities should bound you to a chair
that life is over once you’ve been through trauma or missing a part of your body; and this is my Nut Up journey!
As I’m on my last lap still moving forward working my way up from last place, I’m still pushing to win, only thought running through my mind is it’ll all be worth it in the end. As I come through scoring I see that I’m in 2nd place, 30 seconds behind the leader!! I was still so stoked, I couldn’t believe I worked my way up from 15th to 2nd!! If anyone knows how hare scrambles work, they are a long 2-hour woods race!! Still working a fulltime job to come home and work in the garage on the quads and make sure they are 100% for race day!!
that life is over once you’ve been through trauma or missing a part of your body; and this is my Nut Up journey!
My NUAOBE journey: I have always been active, more of a runner and did very little weights or my lifting consisted of 5# dumbbells. So after college I joined a local gym and could barely do 2 pushups and if there were body weight movements I fell behind. One day I overheard the instructor and another participant talking about me and I heard them say “she’s fast, but she’s not strong.” That resonated in me and my desire to be strong grew like wildfire. I then joined a Crossfit gym and though it didn’t happen overnight I got stronger and gained the ability to do over 25 pushups unbroken. Fast forward to 2 years into doing Crossfit, I did a competition and made it to the finals round. This final event/workout had chest to bar pullups and heavy snatches which I wasn’t able to do yet. After many failed attempts, a few tears, and having every single girl on the floor lap me, I figured out how to do those chest to bar pullups even if they were one rep at a time. I then went on to a barbell that was very heavy for me at the time and finished the rep with just enough time to pass the girl I was next to. It was the best feeling in the world even though I didn’t finish the event or win. Being able to prove other people wrong, be strong and do amazing things is how I #NUAOBE. Pictured is my hands after the day of competing. I literally shed blood, sweat and tears on that competition floor, but I would do it again because I know it has made me stronger mentally and physically.
My greatest Nuaobe moment happened 4 months ago when my dream and I came crashing down, quite literally. I’ve always known being a performer and dancer is exhausting but nothing could have prepared me for the moment when I fractured a vertebrae on my spine in the middle of a national tour across the county. One show, I get onstage to start our first number that I’m dancing en pointe and feel a shooting pain up my back. Feeling it was too late to call out I had to “nut up”. I couldn’t let my cast mates down and it was too late to call the swing in so I went back out and cautiously finished the rest of the show, barely. The next day I was taken to urgent care. After an X-ray and evaluation, I was told I had fractured a piece in my back and was not cleared to dance for a long time. I was told I wouldn’t be able to continue the tour and would have to be sent home the next day. I was devastated. I didn’t want to leave my show family and was heartbroken that such a large piece of my life was being taken away. I shed a lot of tears that night at the show. Tears to my fantastic crew and dressers whom I would miss. Tears for the beautiful show that the cast brought to the stage. Tears that I couldn’t stand next to them like I did every night. The next morning I was put on a plane back to NYC to begin my recovery of doctors appointments, physical therapy, and rest. Now I’m back on my feet as no injury is going to take me out for long. Dance is my life and I won’t ever stop.
It was a weekend of ups and downs. Straight out of the trailer Dawson liked the course a lot which is definitely a rarity, but a good sign. At the start of the race he was in last place off the line and actually crashed once before entering the woods. Instead of giving up or giving in, he went to work and after the first lap Dawson had worked his way up to 2nd place just 28 seconds out of 1st. On the second lap he made the pass for the lead and never looked back! 1st Place finish with a time of 1:14:02 !!
– SPENCER & DAWSON
This picture was taken in December 2017, I had finally drawn my antlered elk tag which I had waited 9 years to draw. I had the month of December to hunt for my first elk ever. Hoping to fill the family freezer for the winter, we headed down with our enclosed trailer equipped with a wood burning stove and cots. The first potion of the month was very tough hunting, I put on over 50 miles on my boots and countless hours looking through the spotting scope, looking for the elusive cypress wapiti. The first three weeks went by without any sign of the elk. We decided to fly the zone to have a bird’s eye view and try to locate the elk, with only finding livestock and beautiful views we were back to square one for the last week. Finally, the weather changed, the temperature dropping drastically to -50 degrees Celsius (-58 Fahrenheit) The frigid temperatures made the elk more active, but also took hunting them to the next extreme. Guys were packing their camps up while we decided to NUT UP AND OUT BALL EM! With working through the small issues of vehicles not starting, pull start cables breaking, waking up multiple times throughout the night to stock the stove to keep warm, and dealing with the storm that came with the cold temperatures. I managed to seal the deal on my first bull elk with 48 hours of the season remaining. The family was happy to fill the freezer for the winter, and it was definitely a moment in my life that I will NEVER forget.
Hello, I’m Alex, 18 years old from Quebec, Canada and I’m here to describe my nut up moment.
My passion for Racing is huge, especially for Sprint Cars. I’m currently racing in the iRacing World of Outlaws World Championship, but in August last year I had the opportunity to go real life sprint car racing because of my achievements on the simulation. Once at the track, the atmosphere is completely different and you can feel the energy that it provides. As of a rookie in real racing, going in a 305 sprint car at Castrol Raceway was quite something.
After all the heats, I had to go through the B-main. I was able to make the feature after my left front shock was unclipped from the shock tower. The car was very though to drive and I wasn’t going to give up.
Come feature time, I started 18th out of 20 cars and made my way through the field one car at a time to finish 6th against more powerful cars. I was awarded the hard charger for passing the most car that night.
I can remember going to the green flag and everyone is lined up ready to go and you know you gotta get up on the wheel and get on the throttle. That was one of my favourite moments. As of in the race, every lap is a new challenge and when you sit in that race car, the adrenaline is turned on full speed.
With all that being said, my nut up moment is when you go full on out there chasing a dream no one can see but you two feet from the wall.
I didn’t gave up and I never will. That’s what NUAOBE is about
– ALEX B