How to Fall Down and Still Win

Heather Dorniden

We all fall down sometimes and usually, we’re just looking to get back up. But getting back up and winning the race?


Today, we spotlight Heather Dorniden and her amazing 600 meter run during the 2008 Big 10 Indoor Track Championships.

This is a sports moment that will be forever remembered. With only 200 meters left in the 600 meter race, Dorniden falls and actually slides on the unforgiving track surface. Even the announcers seemingly write off any chance of her winning.

Heather Dorniden

Dorniden confesses that she was initially motivated by just getting back up and finishing the race but running in front of a hometown crowd and her parents, she felt a surge of new energy as fans started cheering louder than ever.

She inches out second place finisher and teammate, Jamie Dittmar, for the win, later stating “that last 50 meters, I hit a gear that I never knew I had”.

For her accomplishment, Dorniden was the first-ever recipient of the Most Courageous Performance.

The human spirit is capable of just about anything for those who believe and give their all.

Heather Dorniden reflects on the once in a lifetime moment today as an accomplishment she’ll always treasure.

“It’s probably one of my greatest running memories of all time. It’s something that is completely unexplainable to me besides through a higher power. I feel like the Lord just filled me up and gave me the opportunity to show what amazing things can happen through Him.”

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