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Wednesday, February 15, 2012

CMT is Our Mountain

Tenzig Norgay was a member of the first team to reach the summit of Mount Everest.  He said about climbing mountains; “When people are going to a mountain they should forget the mole hills. When they are involved in a big thing, they should have big hearts to go with it.”
  He and Edmund Hilary were the first to me reach the top of Everest in 1953.  No one knew if it was even possible, since many had tried and failed.
After their feat, reporters wanted to know “Who got there first?”
Tenzing later wrote about the question; “Mountaineers realize there is no sense in such a question.”  “That two men are on the same rope, and that is all there is to it.”  He further said “All the way up and all the way down we helped each other and were helped by each other and that was way it should be.” He explained.  “We were not leader and led, we were partners.”
We are partners as well and in a sense on the same rope.  All through my training I have been helped by many of you with advice and encouragement.   Many of us with CMT know it takes a big heart to do what we do and I could not run Boston without the support and encouragement of my team.    CMT is the mountain we climb together.
As of today there is a second group to raise awareness of CMT. The CMTA has decided to start a team. Some in the CMT community have been upset Team CMT is sponsored by HNF. We had at one time been loosely affiliated to the CMTA.
  I am a CMTA member.  I support their mission and wish this new team well.  If I see their athletes at an event I will cheer them on and salute them as I pass them on the race course. I’ll be happy to take a picture with them and even sign an autograph or two. Just kidding.
I refuse to engage in battle with them. I personally have spent over $10,000 dollars to raise awareness of CMT. I have CMT and have seen the effects in my own family and in the families of team members.  The athletes on this team understand that CMT steals a piece of us every day.  I am committed with my heart and soul to this cause. I am committed to each and every member of this team.
I welcome anyone wishing to climb this mountain with us. We are in the same battle and we are on the same rope. It doesn’t matter who gets there first, who raises the most money or has the biggest team.   I’m in competition against CMT, not another team with the same goal. When we find treatments or a cure for CMT we’ll all be winners.
I am thankful for each of the members of this team. You all mean so much to me. I value each and every one of you. It means more than I can say, especially as I prepare for Boston.
Thank you so much for your encouragement, interest and support of Team CMT and our mission to raise awareness of Charcot-Marie-Tooth Disorder.
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.

Running, triathlons, impaired athlete, paratriathlon, USAT, running and CMT

1 comment:

  1. The problem is Chris that the HNF seems to be in competition with the CMTA. That is the sad part as there are NO WINNERS when that happens. I follow your posts with great interest. I cheer you on from the comfort of my living room because of what you do for CMT, but the fact that you do it for the HNF pains me greatly when I know you started out doing this for the CMTA. Just sharing my thoughts. Keep on running!