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Monday, September 1, 2014

Goodbye to Summer

Hoyt Park Pool

“Life is like a river, if you are aiming for a goal that isn’t your destiny, you will always be swimming against the current.”- from the movie “Men who stare at goats”

It's Labor Day and that means the end of summer for me. Here in Wisconsin the weather will begin to turn cold soon. Fall is a beautiful time with cool nights and beautiful fall colors.
Today was the last day for swimmng at Hoyt Park pool.  I discovered this outdoor pool when I met my coach for some individual swim lessons.  The pool was once part of the Milwaukee County park system. When the county decided to close the pool, local residents stepped forward to save the pool. They raised the funds to renovate the pool and even added a beer garden for after hours enjoyment. 
This is just the kind of grassroots efforts we need in the CMT community to raise awareness. I'm beginning to see that happen and it is really exciting.
I joined because it was so wonderful to do my laps outside.  Someone mentioned a few days ago I had a great tan. It was from all the laps done outdoors. I even did a workout in the rain a few days ago.  I enjoyed my last few workouts since I will be locked up indoors for months.
My swimming made great progress this year due to the fun of swimmning at Hoyt Park and open water swims at Pewaukee Lake.  The one on one coaching I got improved my technique and increased my confidence.
Last year I never did more than one lap at open water swim and I missed most of the weekly sessions due to fatigue. This year I made most weeks and most of those weeks I did four or five laps.
I've improved enough that I've signed up for the National Aquathon Championship in El Reno, Oklahoma.  It is a 1500 meter swim, double the distance I am used to.
So even though Summer is over for me, my triathlon season is far from over. I will also be competing in just a few weeks at the Paratriathlon National Championship in Tempe Arizonia.
I'll be joined by Team CMT member Alyson O'Connor. I am really looking forward to meeting her and her family. 
I'll also be busy helping our sponson the Hereditary Neuropathy Foundation to raise awareness for CMT, since this is CMT Awareness Month.
Summer is over, bring on the Fall!


Chris Wodke
Founder & Manager Team CMT

Chris is a triathlete and long distance runner. She is a three time participant of the Boston Marathon.  She was the 2012 National Champion Paratriathlon Open Division. In 2013 she qualified as a member of the Team USA Duathlon Team and was eligible to compete in 2014 at the Age Group World Duathlon Sprint Championship in Pontevedre Spain.  She chose instead to represent the U.S. as a paratriathlete at the Pan-American Triathlon Championship in Dallas, Texas.

She is the author of the book, “Running for My Life” that details her experience as a CMT affected athlete.

You may visit her author page at:

Team CMT is a group of athletes and supporters working to raise awareness and to find a cure for CMT. We have 152 members in 30 states. We also have members in Australia, Canada, Vietnam, Turkey, Finland and Iran. If you wish to join us visit our web site; or

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.

Additional Link
Follow CMT affected Paratriathlete Timmy Dixon

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