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Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Meet Team CMT U.K Member Julie Glover

"Everyone has a story, it's what you make out of it. Yyou can feel sorry for yourself or you can pick up and use it as motivation."- Esubalow Truneh

Team CMT is global with members in Vietnam, Canada, Australia, Scotland, Iran, and Finland. I recently interviewed our member in Scotland Julie Glover. Julie is originally from Rockford, Illinois, just a little over an hour from my hometown of Milwaukee.

1.)   How did you hear about Team CMT?

I heard about Team CMT from a post on the CMT UK website. The were doing a fundraiser called the '100 Hundred'. 100 people to raise 100GBP, all proceeds to go to CMT research. I thought, 'I can do that!' That evening I came across Chris Wodke's post on the CMT Association's FB page about her book and decided to Google it. Team CMT popped up and I joined.

2.)   What made you want to join Team CMT?

I thought I could help make a difference by doing something active and (hopefully!) inspirational. I wanted to show others with CMT that although it is progressive, there is no need to give up!

3.)   Are you an athlete?  If so what sports?  What events do you plan to do? What are your fitness goals?

Lol, I wouldn't call myself an athlete but I AM a fitness instructor. I teach different types of Zumba classes plus Circuits and Bootcamp. I also attend University full time and chase my two young children around...that would keep anyone fit ;)

4.)   I know you did a 5K recently, tell us about the race (Where it was, who ran with your, why you picked the race) and how the race went for you.

We had gorgeous weather out at Holyrood Park in Edinburgh, Scotland. The race went around the bottom of Arthur's Seat near the Dynamic Earth museum. It was actually my friend Shondra (who oddly enough is also from America) that suggested we do this run. She is a stroke survivor and had things to prove to herself as well. The run itself was easier than I thought it would be, but my body sure paid for it over the next few days! That won't stop me from doing another though.

5.)   Do you or a family member have CMT? If you have CMT when were you diagnosed?  What type CMT?

My grandmother, mother, uncle, brother and I all have CMT, my uncle and brother are in orthotics and my mother's hands are starting to become affected. I started experiencing extreme fatigue and leg weakening around age 25, and couldn't stand on my toes 6 months later. At the time, the doctor I saw said that as CMT ran in my family and was not only degenerative but seemed quite aggressive I should just accept the fact I'd probably be in a wheelchair in 10 years time. I have since been to a geneticist who visually diagnosed me but although they drew a blood sample and sent it to the lab, mine isn't a type with a known marker. (And I've no need for that wheelchair yet!)

6.)   Tell us a bit more about you. I know you grew up in Rockford Illinois. How did you end up in Scotland?

I met an amazing burly Scotsman and fell in love. I had already been in love with Scotland since I was 6 years old, this was a dream come true!

7.)   What do you miss most about Rockford?

My family. We've always been close and it's hard not to be able to drop by for a cuppa with my mother or see my brothers. I'm really missing my Nani (grandmother) and seeing all my nieces and nephews grow up. Thank goodness for Skype, Facebook and WhatsApp!

8.)   Where did you go to school?  Are you married?  Do you have children?  What do you do for a living?

I worked in veterinary medicine when I was in the US. I graduated from Argosy University and was a Certified Veterinary Technician for nearly 10 years. I moved to Scotland in 2008 and got married to Chris in 2009. We have 2 wee boys, Caeleb (4yrs) and Carter (17 months).

I took the training and became a fitness instructor and Zumba coach while I was pregnant with Caeleb. I'm in school 36 hours a week (and that's without the commute or studying) and I still teach a few fitness classes every week.

 I've also become a qualified KCR (Kinetic Chain Release) therapist after discovering the treatment and seeing a massive improvement in my legs and quality of life. I went on the training courses and discovered all the benefits it can I help others in another way!

9.)   Your favorite song to work out to?

I have to admit that lately I love anything by Bastille.

10.)                    Anything else you want us to know about you?

I still love animals and have a Leonberger named Lincoln and three cats. On the weekends, Chris and I take the kids on walks to the lagoons across from our house, to the park or even take a bus ride.

My family is the most important things to me and being together as much as we canis a priority. My husband and I also teach our children kindness and tolerance for folks with disabilities. It warmed my heart the other day...I was on the bus with my children and when Caeleb saw a young man with a cane board our very full bus, he stood up and said 'Have my seat. You can rest your legs'.

I would have to say I view my personal experience with CMT as a blessing. True, it's not as severe as some forms, but it is a daily struggle to find enough energy to get everything done. I occasionally get the blues but I remind myself of all the things I can do and have overcome. I wouldn't be the person I am today if I had been born without HN. The determination and will that comes from being disabled...especially when someone tells me I 'can't' do I sure proved those doctors wrong.

Thank you Julie for being on Team CMT and being such a great role model! You handle your CMT with grace and dignity.  The work team members like Julie do is so important for raising awareness.  They are helping to make the invisible, visible. One in two people have not hear of CMT. Team CMT members are changing that. The first step to treatments and a cure is raising awareness.

We will win this fight against CMT. How could be do anything else with great Team CMT members like Julie Glover!

Author at Duathlon National Championship Oro Valley 2013

Chris Wodke
Founder & Manager Team CMT

Chris is a triathlete and long distance runner. She is a three time participant of the Boston Marathon.  In 2012 she finished 2nd at Boston in the Mobility Impaired Division. She was on the course in 2013 when the bombs exploded.

She has appeared three times at the Paratriathlon National Triathlon Sprint Championship. She was the 2012 and 2014 National Champion Paratriathlon Open Division Champion.  She was the 2014 Duathlon PC Open Champion.

In 2014 she was the PC Open Champion at the Duathlon National Championship. She has qualified to represent Team USA at the Aquathon ITU World Championship in Chicago in 2015.  

 In 2014 she represented  the U.S. as a paratriathlete at the Pan-American Triathlon Championship in Dallas, Texas.

She travels around the country raising awareness of CMT.

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 159 members in 30 states. We also have members in Australia, Scotland, 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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