Sunday, September 2, 2012

Post NYC IM

It has been about 11 weeks since I posted last—caught up in IM prep…. So here is my latest update: I turned 50 on August 8th and completed my 10th Ironman Race in NYC on August 11th, 15 weeks after my last radiation treatment. It was a great day on a tough course and although I missed my goal time by 45 minutes, it was the fastest IM I have done since I qualified for Kona in 2004 with an 11:26:02—this year I was 12:00:50 (I will post my full race report in another entry).
Once I recovered my energy from the radiation treatments, my training went really well and all was on track for a solid race. The only side effect from the breast cancer was tightness and discomfort in my pectorals on the side of my surgery—easily managed. About a month or so out of the race I began having some lower abdominal and lower back discomfort and decided to head to my OB/GYN (keeping my fingers crossed). An exam, ultra-sound exam and then an MRI confirmed a lime-sized cyst on my right ovary that needed to be removed, as the doctor said that it would continue to grow. Arghhh, another bump in the road to deal with…. My doc felt 99.9% sure that it was a benign cyst filled with fluid and that waiting a few weeks to do the surgery would be okay—one risk, it could burst if it got too big….great. So I charged onward with my IM preparation with my new “friend” Muriel (my sister in-law named my cyst) in tow. The back discomfort got a bit worse, she was growing, and I was a bit nervous on how things would feel come race-day. But, I had worked so hard for the race I was not going to let this derail the day. The swim was great, the bike was ok and the run was a bit of a challenge-when I realized that I was not going to hit my goal time, I did not let it get me down. I was just so happy to be out there competing, not for me, but in honor of my mom and in memory of my brother. Thoughts of them and what they went through (my mom is done with her chemo and is now having radiation and it has been just one year since my brother’s death) kept my focus on the finish line. The mind is a powerful thing, as it can talk your body in and out of a lot of things—positive thoughts can push you through tough times—I found this so true with my battle with cancer and in my racing. I did cross the line with a smile on my face, focusing on all of the positives—it was a great day! I had several clients also compete and everyone had a terrific day. Congratulations to coachbuxton.com athletes; Becky Sage, Phil Beane, David Tattan and Caroline Lettieri for finishing the IM. Below is Team TRI for HOSPICE members, Phil Beane, Becky Sage (and her daughter Addison) and the Coach at the finish line. (Missing is Dina Arceo who was sadly unable to compete due to a bad bike crash the Thursday before the race).
The race was not very spectator friendly, but at mile 20 on the run in Riverside Park there is a great outdoor bar, The Hudson River Café and this is where my wonderful support crew was waiting for me:
Stevie, Luke, Sam, Ben, B-Lee, Liz and Marty—missing is Terry who took the photo. It was wonderful to have family and friends at the race—we all had a great time in the City! My Tri for Hospice (www.triforhospice.com) teammates and I are excited to announce that we nearly doubled our fundraising goal of $15,000, which will be donated to Hospice and Palliative Care of Greensboro. We still have one other fundraiser, Ridgewood Try a TRI for HOSPICE (www.YouthTri703.com ); on September 10, 2012 that we hope will push us over the $30,000 mark. Thank you so much to all of our sponsors and donors who helped make this happen—we are over whelmed at the generosity of all….. I took a bit of a break from training 2 weeks following the race (walked a lot, easy short swims and short spins on the bike), battled a nasty cold (luckily no abdominal gunk from the Hudson) and had my surgery on Monday. All went well, I had the cyst and bad ovary removed as well as the other—no worries now about ovarian cancer…. The pathology came back and it is all good—the cyst was pretty big and filled with blood—Yuk! I cycled easy for 2 hours yesterday and ran for an easy hour today. It felt good to be out and about and I will slowly ease back into a routine, doing what I always tell my athletes about recovering “take things easy and listen to your body.” An oh-yeah, I signed up for an IM in 2013, Mt. Tremblant in Canada—I have some unfinished business to take care of….. Get out and make it a GREAT DAY!

1 comment:

Karen said...

Hey Karen, thank you for popping by and introducing me to your blog! What a journey you have been on this last year, and what an inspiration you are on many fronts!.....

I wish you a continued healthy recovery from your surgery, as you say listening to your body is what is required!

Consider your blog bookmarked! Thanks again for popping by! All the very best, Karen