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Saturday, June 18, 2011

Team CMT Member Cheryl Monnat

Cheryl Monnat has been with Team CMT from the very beginning. She was there to listen to my idea about this team and worked with me on the design of our singlets.  She is also the manager and sponsor of our soon to be Team CMT softball team. Their shirts will carry the same STAR logo. Cheryl has also been active in recruiting new members and promoting our cause of raising awarness of CMT.

After playing on the softball team for many years, Cheryl is only an occasional sub this year. She is cutting back on her softball practice because she has started training for the Lakefront marathon. Monnat will be joining team members Gary Kurkar, Scott Stoner and Robert Kearney at the event on October 9th.  This will be her first marathon and I expect she will qualify for the Boston Marathon.
 Cheryl returned to competition last year after a long layoff.  Cherly actually got me started racing many years ago when we were roomates.

She has run four half marathons; Eisenbahn and Door County where she placed first in her age group, the Trail Breaker where she finished second in her age group and recently the Madison Half.  Monnat also took first place in her age group for the Great Lakes Multisport Winter 10 K series. Cheryl is an age group winner in many races where she competes.

The next races for Cheryl will be the Rock and Sole Summerfest Half Marathon and the Reykjavik Half Marathon in August.  Cheryl will be celebrating her birthday the day of the event.  At first she was not too excited by the idea of a race in Iceland, but is now excited about the chance to explore Iceland before the race since she is also an avid hiker and mountain biker.

Cheryl is an accomplished triathlete and ran the ADOA and Devils Lake Triathlon last year. She took first in both age groups.

Cheryl is also an avid cyclist. She recently completed the 50 mile loop on the Ride for the arts and this week is doing the GRABBAW 480 mile bike ride over the next seven days. She is wearing her Team CMT gear and will have her Team CMT water bottle so she will be raising awareness of Team CMT all week.

Cheryl and I first met when we both pledged to the Alpha Omicron Pi Sorority at UWM. We have worked together, been roomates and traveled together.  Cheryl lives in Whitefish Bay and works for Johnson Controls. I always make her drive when we travel together and she is great about plotting out all our routes. So far we have traveled to Germany, St Croix and Curaco together. I am really pleased to have my good friend Cheryl on Team CMT!  Look for many more age group wins and a long racing career. She is even planning on running the Solar Eclipse Marathon in Austraila in 2012.

Chris Wodke
Founder & Manager Team CMT

Team CMT is a group of athletes and supporters working to raise awareness and to find a cure for CMT. We have almost 100 members in 17 states. If you wish to join us visit our web site.

CMT or Charcot-Marie-Tooth is the most commonly inherited peripheral neuropathy. It affects over 155,000 Americans (as many as MS).  It is a disease of the nerves that control the muscles. It is slowly progressive, causing loss of normal function and or sensation in the lower legs/feet and arms/hands.

Symptoms include; muscle wasting in the lower legs and feet leading to foot drop, poor balance and gait problems Atrophy in the hands causes difficulty with manual dexterity.

Structural foot deformities such as high arches and hammer toes are common.

Poor tolerance for cool or cold temperatures and many people have chronically cold hands and feet.

Additional symptoms may include fatigue, sleep apnea, breathing difficulties and hearing loss.

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