Kidney donor to run Colfax Marathon

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Grace Sims has completed more than 45 road marathons and 80 ultra trail races. Now she hopes to raise awareness about kidney donation.

DENVER — Grace Sims has been an active runner since her mid-20’s. She’s completed more than 45 road marathons, 80 ultra trail races which is about 50-100 miles, Boston marathon, New York, Chicago, and the Colfax marathon.

When Sims finished her MBA at the University of Colorado, she made a promise to herself to run several per year until she’s 80 years old, but that promise didn’t plan for a surgery at age 52.

“I made the decision to donate my kidney about a year and half ago at a race called ‘TransRockies, it’s a 6-day trail running stage race,” Sims said.

In 2022, Sims was inspired by those who have been on dialysis, and also inspired by a friend who is an athlete, but also a kidney donor. That motivated her to take action and change someone’s life by donating her kidney.

“A friend of mine had presented at one of the dinner sessions that he donated his kidney,” Sims said. “It was a compelling story about how many athletic adventures he’s had since and he saved somebody’s life”.

“It really sparked my interest, and my husband was super supportive and said if I made it through the testing process that he would be supportive of me doing this,” Sims said.

RELATED: Denver Colfax Marathon to have historic participation numbers this year

On November 29th, Sims officially donated her kidney to an anonymous recipient at AdventHealth Porter in Denver.

“I’m super blessed and thankful to be heathy, active and it’s the one thing I can do while I’m living. I can fundamentally change someone’s life for me that was super important,” Sims said.

Sims said she did not recover as fast as she expected but took extra precautions by taking it easy the first couple of weeks.

“Now, I can go back and do my long-distance races, trail running and marathons and continue on my journey,” Sims said. “I’m really excited for the recipient that received my kidney and hope they’re doing amazing and hope I get to meet them someday. For me just knowing that they’re feeling good and doing better, it’s a huge inspiration for me.”

Four months post-donation, Sims was able to get back to do was she loves and signed up for her first race back in April.

This year will be extra special for Sims, she will be running the Colfax Marathon on Sunday to spread awareness for kidney donation. Sims hopes her experience can be a lesson for those who are hesitant about donating.

RELATED: Denver Colfax Marathon introduces ‘Colfax FLY Feet’ program

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Kidney donor to run Colfax Marathon

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