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Charlotte woman runs to raise awareness about alopecia – Spectrum News

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CHARLOTTE, N.C. — On any given day you’ll find Lindsay Walter stretching and hitting the pavement, training for her next race. 
Walter says she started running 10 years ago after her first marathon, and found community and strength amongst Charlotte runners. 
"We all look and train so differently, but we all come together for one common cause, and it helps me feel included and just like everyone else," Walter said. 
 
What You Need To Know
As people set their New Year’s resolutions, one woman is knocking hers out, running for 48 hours 
Lindsay Walter has run over 40 marathons
She wasn’t always comfortable running without a wig, but now she’s sharing her journey with alopecia
 
But she hasn’t always felt comfortable running as herself without a wig, showing her condition. 
"I was born with a head of hair and then right before I was 2 it all began to fall out. First, it was in small, quarter-sized chunks, but within a few weeks, I was bald," Walters said. 
Walter has alopecia, an autoimmune hair-loss condition. Since she was 2, Lindsay ran, played basketball and hid her alopecia behind a wig. 
She didn’t know anyone who had the condition, and she says she grew up being bullied about her wigs — and now strangers will make rude comments about her not wearing wigs. 
"People have told me I look prettier when I wore my wig," she said. 
She remembers one training day when she decided it was time to live as herself.
"I was so overcome with such emotions and strength that on the greenway I ripped off my wig, in the middle of the greenway," she said. 
Since that moment Walter says she’s been dedicated to running empowered, creating her own community and being the person she needed when she was younger. 
Walter founded a pen pal program for younger kids with alopecia.
"I started Lindsay’s Little Pals originally two years ago. I had written some letters randomly just through kids that I had met," she said.  
Walter says her "little pals" have even met her at the finish line. 
"I’ve given my medals to kids with alopecia when I cross the finish line and it’s just like the sweetest thing," she said. 
Walter says it’s all about being who she needed when she was younger.
"I know how much it would have meant to me to have known an adult out there living their life. I know what it would have meant to me," Walter said. 
If you know a young person with alopecia interested in corresponding with Walter, you can find her pen pal page on Instagram @lindsayslittlepals3, and she can be found @lindsayhannah3. 

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