Breast Cancer Survivor Completes Her First Half-Marathon

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WARREN CO., Ky (WBKO) -- Runners and walkers were up early to race in the Total Fitness Connection's Run and Walk for Children to benefit the Family Enrichment Center at Basil Griffin Park.

One woman who had a special reason for participating in her first half-marathon.

"I'm nervous. I'm anxious, but I'm just trying to keep in my mind I can do this," said Karen Costello.

She was about to cross the start line to race with hundreds of other runners, but her reason to be there went beyond competing with them.

She started running in April 2012. That june she was diagnosed with breast cancer, but she didn't let it keep her from reaching her goals.

"Two weeks after my first surgery, I started walking a couple miles a day to try to get back. Then once the doctors released me, I started running again."

Between surgeries, she ran to find strength during her fight with cancer.

"When I would run, I would get my mind off myself and my health, so it was like a healing process. When you get out there and run, you can meditate, pray."

She's now cancer free and has been training for the half-marathon she ran Saturday morning.

"So I'm very blessed with my health to be here. It's just one of those things I wanted to do to mark off my bucket list and say that I have done. I certainly won't be the fastest, but I want to cross that finish line."

She hopes her story sends a message to those fighting cancer.

"Try to stay positive. I've not always been that way, because there will be valleys. But try to stay positive and just push forward."

And push forward she did, finishing the race just 11 minutes over her two and a half hour goal.

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