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Sunday, March 3, 2013

Week 12 Boston Training-Finishing Strong

The athletes and volunteers of Dare2Tri 2013 Workshop

"Victories in life come through our ability to work around and over the obstacles that cross our path. We grow stronger as we climb our own mountain."-Marvin Ashton

This week was an easy week. Easy being a relative term since now even the easy weeks are hard.
It's so important to finish every work out and every week well. A good ending to the week sets me up for the next week of training.  Finishing is strong whether in training or in a race.  A good finish gives you mental strength for the next obstacle, race or workout.

I had an awesome finish to my week of training. On Friday night I did 13 miles on the treadmill (2 hr 20 minutes).  It felt good and the treadmill setting has gone up quite a bit.

Even better on Saturday I attended the Dare2Tri workshop in Highland Park Illinois.  I almost didn't go. I questioned whether I should even go. I thought people would look at me and wonder why I was even there. Having CMT I know I look fairly normal.  I cleared my attendance with the organizer.

The day did not start off well. The directions I got off map quest were all wrong. I called Kari the event organizer and she got someone to talk me in.   Right away I met my volunteer for the day.

My volunteer assistant Marissa

Marissa is a nurse at Northwestern hospital. She works with patients with neuro-muscular conditions and actually knew all about CMT. She was really interested in how it affected me as an athlete.  She is a triathlete and has qualified for the USAT age group Nationals here in Milwaukee.  It will be her first real trip to Milwaukee and I know she is going to love the course. I look forward to cheering her on. Marissa was there to help me with anything I needed for the day. She got my bike all set up in the bike stand for the computrainer class. She was also my photographer all day. Thanks Marissa. It was great meeting you.

The day started with yoga (love it), next up was a swim clinic. It was the best single hour of coaching ever. I came away with lots of new drills. It was pointed out I was not bending my elbow. When I said " I know and how do I fix it?"  The coach had a drill.  Thanks coach for lots of things to practice in the pool.

The pool so warm it was like bath water. A nice change from my club pool where it takes four laps to even start to warm up. Lots of laps and the hour clinic was done before I knew it.

Pool Clinc, I am in lane 3 in the white swim cap

Then it was on to running drills.
Practice my spinter's lean

 We learned all kinds of drills for warming up and improving our stride.
Not quite one with the bike, but having fun

Finally we finished with a computrainer class.  I missed class on Wednesday, so this was a great catch-up. My legs were dead from my treadmill run, so I just dialed things back a bit.   I don't look one with the bike, but it was a good workout. I even got to ride next to Melissa Stockwell current Tri 2 National Triathlon Champion.

The very best part of the day was that Melissa Stockwell was in my group of athletes.

Melissa was the USAT para triathlete of the year in 2010, and 2011.  She is  a multiple Tri 2 National Champion. She is also a level 1 USAT Triathlon Coach and co founder of Dare2Tri based in Chicago.
Melissa could not have been nicer and we talked a bit about Nationals and my experience there. I am looking forward to meeting all the athletes again at Nationals in Austin.  It was really a thrill to meet her and be in the same group.

It was good to be with a group of athletes with challenges. Everyone was great to me and I can't wait to see them again in Austin in May. I am glad I took the chance to go. It was a fantastic experience, I learn lots and I finished the week strong.  Sometimes I am not sure where I belong as an athlete. I can't keep up with normal athletes and get tired of being the slow clumsy one. I also did not know if I would fit in with a group of challenged athletes.   Everyone was so friendly and accepting. Thanks Dare2Tri for making me part of your family.  Thanks for letting me finish out my week by meeting lots of amazing athletes. They inspire me!


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 120 members in 25 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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