January #98 : Amazing Race - by Josh Sparber

POZ - Health, Life and HIV
Subscribe to:
POZ magazine
Join POZ: Facebook MySpace Twitter Pinterest
Tumblr Google+ Flickr MySpace
POZ Personals
Sign In / Join

Back to home » Archives » POZ Magazine issues

Table of Contents

10 Ways to End AIDS (in 10 years)

Happy New You

Political Science

"Prevention" for Positives

Habitats for HIVers

On the Job

Going Under Cover

All the Right Places

2024: AIDS Cured, ex-PWAs Ignored

Trouble Indemnity


Show & Gel

Healthful Humor

Living on Hope


High Resolution: New Year’s Creeds

2004: What’s In, What’s Out?


When Your CD4s Count

New Med on the Shelf

Quick Study: Virus in Vaginas

Strike a Pose

Chicago Hope?

Quick Study: Hep C

Watch Your Mouth


CMV Drug Does Double Duty

Bed Head

Unreality TV


Publisher's Letter

Amazing Race

Most Popular Lessons

The HIV Life Cycle


Herpes Simplex Virus

Syphilis & Neurosyphilis

Treatments for Opportunistic Infections (OIs)

What is AIDS & HIV?

Hepatitis & HIV

email print

January 2004

Amazing Race

by Josh Sparber

...where cancer and HIV are mere hurdles

Who: Richard Brodsky
what: runs the Marathon
where: New York City
When: 11.02.03

A year before lacing up for last November’s run, HIVer and architect-turned-author Richard Brodsky, 51, collapsed at his book signing. An avid marathon man, he seemed to have hit a wall: a cancerous brain tumor, unrelated to HIV. POZ caught up with Brodsky back at the starting line to see if he could bring home the gold.

I’d run marathons annually since 1992, so I was ecstatic to be returning after my seizure. I’d run my fastest one while positive in ’98, but now I had a bad shoulder break from the seizure. I knew that physically this would be my hardest race ever. But I had to finish, to prove that HIVers can lead healthy, productive lives.

Finding out I was HIV positive was the worst day of my life. I had to tell my wife, Jodi, that I was unfaithful, bisexual and positive. She never wavered in her decision to stick by me—we love each other, we have three children and we run marathons together (at our own pace). She’s also helped with my treatment. My cancer is more serious than my HIV—surgery and radiation have rid 95 percent of the tumor, although some cancer cells remain in my brain. Running is therapeutic, too—it eases my headaches. Luckily, I’ve been able to promote my first book [Jodi, The Greatest Love Story Ever Told] and work on my second.

About 18 miles into the marathon, I asked myself, “Why am I doing this?” My shoulder went numb and my legs felt as if they had nothing left. My brain had to tell my body, “I don’t care how much pain you are experiencing, your job is to finish.” Then my oncologist, Casilda Balmaceda, joined me for the last mile and a half. I got a spurt of energy near the finish line, where people called out my name on my shirt and I was able to sprint past most of the runners. My time: 4:52. I felt like an Olympic athlete.

Got an upcoming milestone? Mark the occasion with POZ by emailing LiveToTell@poz.com

[Go to top]

Facebook Twitter Google+ MySpace YouTube Tumblr Flickr Instagram
Quick Links
Current Issue

HIV Testing
Safer Sex
Find a Date
Newly Diagnosed
HIV 101
Disclosing Your Status
Starting Treatment
Help Paying for Meds
Search for the Cure
POZ Stories
POZ Opinion
POZ Exclusives
Read the Blogs
Visit the Forums
Job Listings
Events Calendar
POZ on Twitter

Ask POZ Pharmacist

Talk to Us
Did you participate in an event for National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day 2016?


more surveys
Contact Us
We welcome your comments!
[ about Smart + Strong | about POZ | POZ advisory board | partner links | advertising policy | advertise/contact us | site map]
© 2016 Smart + Strong. All Rights Reserved. Terms of use and Your privacy.
Smart + Strong® is a registered trademark of CDM Publishing, LLC.