Introducing Dee and Josh! Inspiring! But first, grab a tissue! #Us Fat Girls

The following was written by an inspirational friend and fellow UsFatGirl, Dee Cajiuat!

“Why I Run” by Dee Cajiuat

I want to tell you all why I run. I was not a runner at all until I ran my first half marathon in Dallas in March of 2010. I was inspired to start running in honor of my nephew, Joshua.

(photo of Dee finishing a recent 50K with “Team Josh”)

Joshua came out to California (near me) in the summer of 2009 to go to summer camp. When we were together, he always talked of running and always asked me to run with him. Of course, I always said no. However, on his last evening in California, he made me promise to run with him ‘one day’, and I agreed.

On November 30, 2009, my 17-year-old nephew was involved in a serious car accident. He sustained multiple broken bones and a traumatic brain injury. He was in a medically induced coma for nearly 5 weeks. When he awoke, he was in a vegetative state. During those 5 coma weeks,in the midst of life and death decisions that needed to be made, I signed up to run a Rock ‘n’ Roll half marathon – for my nephew that asked me to run with him.

Let me explain, I had not participated in any events longer than a 5K. I was very much overweight and under-trained, but I wanted to honor Joshua’s love of running by running for him.

In March, 2010, I ran the Rock ‘n’ Roll Dallas half marathon and finished in 3:37. I thought it was pretty good for an old, overweight lady like me. I ran six more Rock ‘n’ Roll half marathons that year. I also ran 2 local ones.

My goal was to run and tell people about Josh and by being out there I hoped to get as many people possible praying for Joshua.

Although Joshua has recovered well, he is still not out of the woods. He has served as an inspiration to me and my family. I have lost 50 lbs and I have since completed 28 half marathons and 5 full marathons. I will attempt an ultra 50K the weekend before the Long Beach Marathon. Before the end of this year, I still have an ultra 50K (31 miles), a marathon and six more half marathons to finish. We won’t even start with what’s on the list for next year. . . . stay tuned!

My family has a saying that we have adopted during Josh’s recovery.   The saying is:

“So, Josh, when you can’t run, we’ll run for you. When you can run, we’ll run with you…and all the time, we’re running behind you! Run, Josh…Run!!!”

I will continue to run for Josh until he can run as well as he did before his accident.

Here is a link to Joshua’s story:    

Yellow “Team Josh” shirts available directly from Dee, who you may contact via UsFatGirls on Facebook: