Pop-duo, A Great Big World formed by Ian Axel and Chad King recently announced that “Won’t Stop Running” is the group’s new single. The powerful tune is about King’s battle with Multiple Sclerosis.
King was diagnosed with MS in 2007, and when the doctor told him if he didn’t take the medication that was prescribed he would be paralyzed within seven years. At that point that was when he took matters into his own hands. He has been on the Wahls Protocol Diet and has been living a healthy lifestyle ever since.
The song was King’s response to the narrow-minded medical professionals who handed out medicine without paying attention to lifestyle and diet.
It’s so brave of Chad to speak and sing about such a personal struggle but also by doing so he’s helping others do the same thing. He’s such an incredible person and is giving a voice to millions of fans across the world, yet alone has also changed the lives of many.
The group is encouraging fans to post what “Won’t Stop Running” means to them by holding a sign with #WontStopRunning and using the same hashtag on Instagram and Twitter with their stories. They also created an email email@example.com to send stories anonymously if you don’t want it up publicly. I reached out to a couple fans who were willing to let me share their stories.
I'm gonna start this off by saying you can't always see pain. Whether it's physical or emotional, it might not always be visible. For the past 8 months I've been going to about ten doctors, having test after test, and no one found anything. Yet every single day I was in pain, constant pain. I used to think it was normal, so I didn't say anything until it got bad in November of 2015. Eventually I got diagnosed with panic disorder and social anxiety. So that's one thing I have. After three more months of seeing doctor after doctor and having my gallbladder taken out, we found out I'm hyper mobile (which means my joints are screwed up) and that I have something called Amplified Musculoskeletal Pain Syndrome. It's kind of hard to explain so if you want to know what that means, look it up. I've had many experiences this year at school where people (mostly the head of my high school) have said "you don't look like you're in pain, so you're fine", "just deal with it", and the list goes on and on. People think that just because I'm back at school and looking happy all the time like my usual self, that I'm okay now. Well that's not the case. I still have panic attacks, my pain is still completely constant most of the time, and I still have a hard time at least once a day because of how painful it can get. But just because I don't show it doesn't mean it's not real. The one thing I want to say here is that people everywhere are facing things that you have no idea about. Treat others with respect. Don't think for one minute that just because I'm not bleeding out on the floor, that I'm not in pain. I've learned how to hide it over the past ten years. It might not be a visible pain like when you break a bone or something, but I can certainly assure you, it's real. Lastly, I want to thank my best friends (@hteich01 & @gentleswee) for standing by me through all of this. Even when I wasn't physically at school for two months, they texted me a lot to see if I was okay. They're always there for me and I couldn't live without them. Thank you both for asking me if I'm okay. And thank you for being able to tell if I'm in pain even when I don't verbalize it. I love you guys. ❤️
Here’s my #WontStopRunning photo. I have a lot I want to say, but I will send it by email, as it is a lot of personal and private things, though you guys have helped me get through, so I’d love to share it with you both. What I will say on here is that I have many things/struggles that I’ve gone through: I have Tourette Syndrome, Anxiety, Depression, OCD, ADHD. I’ve been bullied a lot in school and that was very hard as well. Music has helped me a lot to get through everything, and you guys are one of those bands that have really helped me a lot. I will be sending an email with everything I want to say about this, but this post is for the public to see and to absorb. Just keep living your dreams, and never give up on what you are aiming for. Set your goals, and don’t stop running till you reach them. I really hope that @AGreatBigWorld will acknowledge this post, and repost, comment, or like it because this wasn’t easy to let out and it took a lot to post this. Guys, I appreciate everything you do. Keep it up!!! #AGreatBigWorld #MusicHelps #struggles #life #agreatbigworld
— ari ➶ (@aripalmer) May 20, 2016
Growing up as a kid I was bullied a lot. I had a speaking disorder (cluttering and stuttering). I had to go the speech therapy. I was also overweight. My family and friends started making ignorant comments about my weight. In 7th grade, I went out for Cross Country just to lose weight. That same year I ran Track. Now I run both Cross Country and Track in school and I love it. On October 13, 2015 I “rolled” my ankle during Cross Country practice. To sum it up, I sprained my ankle and stretched my ligaments. I couldn’t run for about a month. During that month I started to not like myself. I saw a lot of flaws in my body so I started cutting meat out of my diet. Then I started cutting dairy. Then I just cut my calories in half. I eventually began running again once my ankle healed but, I still continued eating light. I started running more, lifting, core work and just a lot of small workouts. After I ran/workout I never ate. I let my body eat itself away. On January 4, 2016, my mom made me unexpectedly go to the doctors. I lost 10 pounds since August of 2015. The doctor told me I should cut my running distance in half and start eating more. He told me how I could end up in the hospital sooner or later. But I just got worse after that. Thoughts flowed my mind. I went into a deep depression stage. My family started talking behind my back about my weight. My friends started making comments about how “bad” I looked. My ex boyfriend even got in on it and he basically said “you were perfect before but now look at you. Nothing but skin and bones.” I gave up on myself. I was easily consuming at least 1,000 calories a day on fruits and vegetables. I started to workout and run more. On Easter 2016, I dropped an additional 5 pounds. We had our traditional “family gatherings” at my aunt’s house. My aunt came up to me and said “you got too skinny” and the rest of my family started in on the conversation. I left my aunt’s house immediately and haven’t really talked to them since. But, March 29, 2016 I finally opened my eyes. I stood in the mirror and sobbed. My body was gone. I lost majority of my muscle. I was highly underweight. I wanted to die. Suicide did cross my mind a few times. But, I finally pulled myself together. Track began at the beginning of April. I started eating again. Slowly adding meat and dairy back into my body. My Track Coach had faith in me. Now, here I am not even 2 months later. I gained nearly 11 pounds. I am still doing what I love, running at least 4-6 times a week. I ended up placing first place overall in the 1600 meter and 800 Meter at the All American Conference Track Meet on May 14! I also qualified for county. I feel strong and confident now. I refuse to give up. I literally won’t stop running. (Did I mention I came out as bisexual to my friend? Well yes that happened) When I first heard “Won’t Stop Running” I never thought it tied into Chad’s MS. The past week my perspective on this song has changed so much. I look at this song as my survival song now. It holds so many emotions to me. Hearing Chad’s story and tying my story into it makes me want to cry. Its a bittersweet feeling that will stick with me for a long time. –(Instagram: __.emilee.__)
It’s easy to tell from the stories shared that everyone has been through all sorts of struggles. Whether it would be depression, eating disorders, struggles in college, or coming out to your family and friends. Together, we won’t stop running ever. The duo gives all of us a reason to keep on going even through the obstacles that occur in our lives.
Thank you Ian and Chad for writing such positive, inspiring music. Thank you for always being there for us through the hardships. Never let anyone bring you down. You both are such a ray of light and bring so much to the music industry. “Won’t Stop Running” deserves all the attention in world.
Thank you to the fans who let me share their stories. It isn’t easy to share something so personal. All of you are incredibly beautiful. Don’t give up on your goals and dreams. You’ll make it. Positivity is key.
A Great Big World performed “Won’t Stop Running” for the first during a Facebook livestream chat on May 20 and you can check out the heartfelt performance below. Be sure to pick up the single on iTunes now! Spread the word around this song because it’s something that needs to be heard!
They’re heading out on tour this summer with Matt Nathanson and Phillip Phillips. Visit agreatbigworld.com. for all their tour dates.
Interested in keeping up with the most current A Great Big World news? You’re in luck! I run an update account for the group. Find me on Twitter and Instagram. “You guys, if you want to know more about what we’re doing than WE do, make sure to follow @team_agbw. She runs one of our best fan accounts! -Their words! Hope to chat with some of you so soon!Note: Populove is currently undergoing site maintenance following a hiatus. Some post images and comments from previous months may not appear as we work on the issue.