Hitting the Streets in the Heat

With the mercury still rising, runners hit the streets of Bloomfield Sunday morning for the Achilles Connecticut, Hope & Possibility 5K.

The heat index is expected to hit triple digits, but for Mike Tubiak, the weather conditions were just one obstacle. He, like many of the participants, is legally blind.

“Actually with my eye condition, my eyesight gets a little more narrower with just the heat and everything,” he explained.

The Achilles Connecticut, Hope & Possibility 5K is an adaptive program allowing runners with a wide range of disabilities to compete.

“It’s very inspirational because it pulls out people who would never get out onto the roads or out to do anything at all,” Joe Dowling of Old Greenwich said.

Among those running today was Jason Romero, who, although legally blind, ran more than 3,000 miles across the country in 2016. Sunday he hit just over 3 miles as he accompanied 17-year-old Lizzy Cappelli.

“It was really hot. The first mile we did faster than I thought.... then I was like, where’s the third mile?” Cappelli, a Granby resident said.

“I saw people who are living a fulfilling life despite having a disability and actually exceeding and excelling and it was inspirational to me to celebrate with these people,” Romero, who is from Denver, Colorado, said.

Because of the heat, a 10k option was eliminated for Sunday’s race. Still, the spirit of the event remained.

“In order to achieve your best health you need to be physically and mentally strong and this race absolutely signifies that,” Wendy Cherry, president for Cigna’s Connecticut market said.

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