DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – Angela Tortorice makes the grueling 26.2-mile marathon look like a walk in the park. When the Dallas accountant isn’t calculating numbers, she’s collecting medals. She is preparing to run her 1000th marathon on Saturday in Irving.
“That’s going to be a huge relief!” she shares laughing. “And I’m just super excited because a lot of friends and family are going to be there and I really wouldn’t have gotten this far without the support of all my friends and family and my company.”
READ MORE: 3 injured in ax attack at Richardson cafe
Tortorice says she was not a runner. Until she was…and like most seemingly impossible tasks, her journey to ultra-marathon running started with a single step. And then another…
“Just walk about a quarter mile, jog a quarter, walk a quarter, jog a quarter until I work up to running a full mile,” Tortorice recalled.
She ran her first marathon in San Antonio 25 years ago. She says it was a touching moment but she did do not think she’ll ever see her again.
“Definitely not. That day. I thought ‘oh, there’s no how am I going to relive that!’ ”
READ MORE: 3-alarm fire at North Oak Cliff apartments displaces residents
But Tortorice was soon addicted to peace and the community found themselves pounding the pavement…unable to stay away from that starting line.
“An ultra, soon after, then I started running multiple marathons in a year and slowly progressed from about 10 to 20 to 30 to 50 then 129 in a year, and that’s when where I got my Guinness World Record for most marathons in a calendar year, for a woman.
Tortorice has logged marathons all over the world and in all 50 states FIVE times. But there’s more than medals at the finish line: After her husband, John, is diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, Tortorice searches for a cure.
“As a team captain through my company TXU Energy and our bike team, they’ve raised $1.2 million. I’ve personally raised over $165,000 for the cause. So we’re just working to find a cure. .
NO MORE NEWS: Azle High School becomes the permanent home of the relic of Pearl Harbor
She says researchers are making progress and that brings hope for the long road ahead.