Thank you for visiting my Rallyme page. I was honored last year to represent the United States as a team USA member of the National Paracanoe Team. The time has come and training has begun. I am pushing forward to prepare for team trials, National Championships and World Championships this year. It takes a lot of dedication to get to this pooint and the focus and dedication does not stop. I cannot achieve my goals without your help.
The big goal this year is to purchase a new race boat which cost $4,000. I have raised half the money for the new sprint boat and my next competition is August 2-5, which is US Sprint National Canoe-Kayak Compeitions in Clermont Florida.
As an elite athlete there is a committment that has to be made, and sacrifice to stay competitive and achieve the competitive edge for international and national competition. Elite level athletic competition is very expensive as a result of equipment, training and travel costs. Many athletes can’t support themselves due to inflation and the rising cost of living. It’s no secret that athletes live below the poverty line, I am not paddling for the money. There are a few that manage to do very well for themselves,
but the vast majority of us struggle, and I struggle, but am focused on my dream, the 2020
Athletes Page www.brandonholiday.com
My Story is below but I wanted to provide you with metrics for what the money would be used for. I always work hard to find a balance between training and wokr to make sure I can stay the healtiest I can, which is a challenge. With all of your help through donations I will have more time to work on training and recovery. Thank you so much and I hope that I will make you all proud this year. One of the greatest expenses in my sport are boats and I need to purchase a new boat, which will help increase speed. Boats are not different than any other sport where as you progress in skill you change equipment to further assist your performance. Thank you again.
$1,500 -Sweat Fitness- Trainer agility
$1,500 -ATS- Strength Training-Strength
$1,000 Lake Lanier Team trials(Travel, lodging, entry)
$1,500- Sprint National Championships Lodging
$2,000 Winter Training 3 months in Florida
$3,000 World Championships
$4,000 Nelo K1 Cinco Sprint Kayak
$500 Jantex Paddle
Brandon Holiday is a former decorated police officer and a person living with Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE), which is an autoimmune disease where the body attacks itself. He also has Addison’s, and a rare blood clotting condition. Due an on duty injury in the line duty and medical complications he was unable to continue as a police officer and began to adjust his life because of the changing symptoms of his disease.
Due to these injuries and medical issues, In 2006, after four months in the hospital battling with blood clots, wound care, and hyperbaric chamber treatments, doctors had to amputate his left leg below the knee. Because of the life changing events, he faced challenges dealing with his injuries and disease, which led him Challenged Athletes Foundation who flew Brandon to attend the Extremity Games. The Extremity Games is are an extreme sports event for people with amputations and/or spinal cord injuries, hosted by Athletes with Disabilities Network. It was there that Brandon met other challenged athletes and was able see people with disabilities surf, rock climb, wakeboard and ride motocross. He realized then that he can do anything, do what these other athletes were doing. “I was empowered by these athletes and felt like I was regaining that competitive nature I had before.”
Since that time, Brandon has successfully paddled his kayak into five gold medals at the United States Sprint National Championships, becoming the 2014 and 2015 K1, Paracanoe men’s 200m & 500m United States Paracanoe Sprint Kayak Champion and the 2014 Master’s 35+ Able Bodied 500m Champion. Winning two years in a row is an incredible accomplishment for any athlete, but even more incredible given that he has had 10 heart attacks and other medical issues caused by the lupus. Lupus can cause symptoms, like chronic fatigue, loss of organ function, blood clots, pleurisy, and other severe symptoms which can affect him on a daily basis.
In 2016 he achieved his greatest accomplishment making Team USA, National Paracanoe Team. Brandon traveled to Duisburg, Germany to compete with his teammates at the International Canoe Federation, World Championships, which is the Paralympic qualifier for the Rio Paralympics. He was unable to advance to qualify for Rio, but now has his eyes set on the 2020 Tokyo Paralympics.
“There will always be obstacles that we face and at these times of adversity it comes down to how we respond. Do we rise to the occasion or give up? I will always be in the fight and take what you perceive as a limitation and change it to limitless possibilities by adapting.”