Phaware Podcast: Marina and Jovica

Phaware Podcast: Marina and Jovica

This podcast series, created and produced by phaware, is being offered as a regular guest feature on Pulmonary Hypertension News to bring the voices and life experiences of PH patients, family members, caregivers, healthcare specialists, and others to our readers. You may listen to the podcast directly, or read it via the transcript that runs below.

 

I’m Aware That I’m Rare: Marina and Jovica – Inspired by HOPE
The phaware™ interview

Marina Lazić and Jovica Spajić are two Serbian Ultra Marathon runners. Their Inspired by Hope team was established by the Association of Serbian PH patients, knowing that finding a cure starts with raising public awareness about the disease. They recently participated in Sahara Race 2017 in Nambia, running a distance of 250 kilometers in seven days, including #WorldPHDay on May 5. They recorded this podcast prior to the race.

Marina:
My name is Marina Nikolić — now Lazić because I got married. I’m from Belgrade, Serbia.

Jovica:
And my name is Jovica Spajić. I am from Serbia, from Belgrade. It’s a capital of Serbia.phaware logo

Marina:
Inspired By Hope is a new project for raising awareness of pulmonary hypertension. A few months ago my friend Jovica and I met a woman who is suffering from this disease. Her name is Danijela Pešić [phaware podcast Ep #3]. Danijela has established the association of Pulmonary Hypertension in Serbia.

Jovica:
In Serbia it’s a very complicated situation.

Marina:
Unfortunately, in Serbia there is only one treatment for this disease and raising awareness of pulmonary hypertension is the only way to make the problems of these patients visible.

Jovica:
Our mission is to try to find solutions (for) the patient; they must know that they are not alone, you know. We are with them.

Marina:
We decided together to prepare our new project for raising awareness of pulmonary hypertension and we created a team of two ultra marathon runners.

Jovica:
I’m a member of a special anti-terrorist unit in Serbia. It’s special elite police force in Serbia. Endurance sports is something which is like equivalent (of) special forces, you know? And my first race was in Sahara desert several years ago, and sport is almost everything in my life.

Marina:
Jovica gave me a lot of advice about running, but most importantly he gave me a chance to run this important race, because this is a race for patients with pulmonary hypertension. And he chose me to be part of this team. We will train together, work hard.

Jovica:
Marina and I have run several races together. Together we have several projects in our history, and she’s also a very emotional person. Her vision of ultra running is different. It’s more deeper, more emotional, you know.

Marina:
Sahara Race is one big race, which will be held in Namibia, in the … Skeleton Coast National Park. It will be held from the 30th of April to 5th of May. We need to run 250 kilometers. The Sahara Race, of course, includes four stages of approximately 40 kilometers, then one stage of 80 kilometers, and the final stage, which is less than 20 kilometers, maybe 10 kilometers. And that long stage of 80 kilometers will be physically the most difficult part of the race for us, but it will be the most important part of race because we will finish the long stage on the 5th of May and that day is World Pulmonary Hypertension Day. We will run for the honor of all patients who suffer from pulmonary hypertension and we want to inspire them to keep going and keep fighting and we want to be their heart and their hope.

Jovica:
When you do that challenging race, it’s very, very, tough. You give your all that you have got. You gather the last atom of your strength, and that is a similar like everyday life in a patient’s life. They have their own battles, like Danijela. Her breath is some kind of little battle. Like endurance sports, every kilometer sees something new, something very tough, and that is like a similarity, you know?

Marina:
And the hardest part is pain, because endurance runner is in pain most parts of the race. We have a crisis and we’re losing strength and energy, especially at high altitude in the mountain races, we are breathless and gather strength for another step forward. And all that pain disappears when we cross the finish line. But patients have to live with that pain and lack of oxygen every day in their entire lives, and that’s why endurance racing is similar to life as a pulmonary hypertension patient.

Jovica:
We are very, very inspired by these people, you know, and we are very happy because we have an opportunity to bring their story to the whole world, you know? To the whole community, to the ultra running community, to a Serbian community, you know, to whole world community.

Marina:
I remember one girl, her name is Angela, and she’s 19 years old, I think, a girl who is suffering from this disease. And I remember that she had a smile on her face, and I think that she is battling with this disease with that smile, and that smile will be my strength and power on this race.

Jovica:
People can watch us every day, after every stage there are going to be results, and we are going to try to find a solution and to type some messages, and to tell people and our supporters that everything is fine, that we are in good spirits, that we try to bring our story in the best possible way.

Marina:
I think that whoever wants to follow our race and support our goal can visit the official site. It’s www.4deserts.com. My name is Marina Nikolić and I’m aware that I’m rare.

Jovica:
And my name is Jovica Spajić and I’m aware that I’m rare.

 

EVERYBODY HAS A STORY. WHAT’S YOURS?

phaware wants to share your pulmonary hypertension story with their engaged global audience. Whether you are a patient, caregiver, or medical professional, they are enlisting PH community members from across the globe. Visit www.phaware.global/podcast to share your story and to be considered for a future episode.And learn more about pulmonary hypertension at www.phaware.global. #phaware #phawarepod

Pesic phaware podcast
***

Note: Pulmonary Hypertension News is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website. The opinions expressed in this column are not those of Pulmonary Hypertension News or its parent company, BioNews Services, and are intended to spark discussion about issues pertaining to pulmonary hypertension.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *