Cattaraugus County, N.Y. (WIVB) — You wouldn’t know it by watching him run, but 32-year-old, Bradley Poole has Cystic Fibrosis.
“I started running like three years ago and I haven’t stopped since because it’s helped with my lung function, big time,” he said. “It’s like breathing through a straw with your nose plugged, you just can’t really get that deep breath in.”
Despite his condition, Poole recently ran 266 miles throughout Cattaraugus county, all to raise money in the hopes of finding a cure.
“This year I wanted to do something that was going to challenge me physically and mentally and just to show people what is possible,” said Poole. “You know, if you work hard and take care of yourself.”
He ran up to 12 and a half hours each day. Most of them , more than 40 miles from July 5th to July 11th… not too mention it was the hottest week of the month.
“It was well over 100 degrees on the pavement,” he said. “It was very challenging but I had to just keep pushing through. “
Some joined him on his journey, running by his side. Others on the sidelines cheering him on each day. He says their support kept him going.
“I really wanted to throw in the towel but I kept my mission at the forefront of my mind and thought about everybody with CF, how it’s going to inspire and motive them,” he said.
Poole ended up raising $60k for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation of WNY.
Almost even more incredible, is looking back at how far he’s come “Back in my teens, early 20s I started rebelling against the fact that I had Cystic Fibrosis and I slacked off in my treatments,” said Poole. “That was a big Wakeup call my first hospitalization.”
After several more hospitalizations, he knew he had to make a change.
“I decided to get my life back on track. Doing my treatments religiously, exercising religiously . Ever since then it’s been all up hill,” said Poole.
He now owns his own personal training business, and is married to the love of his life with a baby girl on the way. He hopes sharing his story will continue to help others.
“Stay as healthy as possible, do your treatments , add in that exercise,” he said. “If you feel like you need to talk to somebody..don’t be afraid to reach out. The healthier your lungs are when that cure comes out .. the better off your going to be. “
Poole’s goal is to raise $100k! If you want to help him out, click here.
Gabrielle Mediak is a reporter who has been part of the News 4 team since 2019. See more of her work here.