Yes, I’m back running and on my beloved Greenway!!!!! I mean, I never truly got off the saddle, I just had to ride a different horse this summer. The summers, here in Charlotte, are hot and humid… not a great running environment for someone on treatment. Here’s the thing about that… what a great excuse to quit running… it’s too hot, I’m getting chemo, I can’t handle the humidity and this is the kicker… no one… I mean no one, would have thought any less of me if I sat on the couch and rested this season. In fact that’s what they expected. Well far be it from me to give the people what they want… I like to shake things up and that’s just what I did.
Team Omega Nation to the rescue. I knew this summer would be brutal so I devised a plan to keep me in shape and help me fight the fatigue of chemo… biking on a trainer. Lucky for me, so many of my amazing teammates are triathletes… finding a trainer and someone willing to help keep me on track was just a Facebook message away. So now that I had the equipment… I needed motivation. Oh right – the fact that I had signed up for the very first triathlon of my life before I was diagnosed with Stage IV colon cancer. Seriously!!!! So biking indoors was the perfect solution!!!! An hour of biking a few days a week was always my goal… so my plan worked.
After a long hot summer, the cooler temps were bestowed on us earlier this year. The first chance I got, I was on the run. Back in that saddle. My first few jaunts were short and slow, but mentally fulfilling. Then an amazing thing happened… I was taken off my energy zapping, nerve damaging, harder-to-handle chemo. Perfect timing. I knew this would allow me to train more and that’s just what I’ve been doing. My week started with a 6 mile run. I felt so free, strong, happy and cancer free during those miles. It’s my magic place… a place where cancer cannot touch me. Running is a gift and I love opening that present every time I hit the pavement. I followed that magical week with a 12 mile bike ride yesterday. Confidence that I can finish my ‘tri’ next week… check! Now I’m not only in the saddle, but ready to ride this bad boy to the finish line. The horse I’m riding is named Perseverance! ”Percy,” for short!
I am still on chemo and will be for the foreseeable future… not an obstacle that will get in my way. I will continue to change saddles as life requires, but won’t get off the horse. “Percy” will take me to the Savannah 1/2 marathon this November. This is the 1/2 marathon I signed up for after I was diagnosed… I had no plans to ever stop what I enjoyed most. Cancer does not get to take away… it’s only allowed to give. It is a wake up call, a kick in the pants, and motivation like no other – to live like you mean it! Cancer opens doors that might otherwise never be knocked upon. It brings people into your life that you might otherwise never meet. And, it brings together a team of athletes of all speeds, abilities and successes in a way that inspires all of us to stay in our saddles!!!
Giddyup ya’ll!!!! Sue
Molly and Jersey showing us what they think of Cancer…Smart horses!!!!