How I Ran a Marathon One Year After Cancer and a Baby
Hi all! I get quite a few questions about how you can possibly run a marathon 1 year post cancer. The truth is, there are no shortage of survivors adding a marathon to their journey. The thought of a marathon may seem daunting coming out of chemo. Especially when it seems like a struggle to walk to the end of the street. I’ve designed a program that starts you off slowly, combining running and walking intervals until you eventually start solid blocks of running time. This is a 28 week journey which is longer than a typical marathon training program but it is designed for people recovering from cancer. In the coming weeks I will be posting a user-friendly, printable calendar so the workout schedule is a little easier to navigate. I put this up for now because I have had a lot of demand for my approach and don’t want to keep anyone waiting.
- Be sure to talk to your doctor before attempting to train for a marathon. Let them know your approach. Everyone is different and your doctor may recommend taking it easy for a certain window of time. For example, I did not start running until I was off of blood thinners. Read more
This past weekend I pushed my body YET again and double-dog-dared it to risk everything! Fear not readers! This blog will not be turning into a blog of “Look what race I did now!”. I will however, occasionally write about progress in becoming the challenger of my body rather than being the challenged. I do find it important to write about this particular race because it was a very different kind of race, pushing the limits of my most limiting side-effects. Read more
Questions. Questions. Questions.
Questions circling through my mind like a horse on a racetrack.
- How will I get back in shape after cancer?
- How will I be strong after cancer?
- How will I turn this experience into something good?
- How will I inspire others to go through cancer with strength and grace and come out a powerhouse?
- What have I always wanted to do but haven’t? (Many, many things! Haha! I’m a typical Pisces dreamer. Stay on track- focus on physical feats!)
- What will make me feel like I am okay again?
- Most importantly, how can I teach others cancer isn’t a roadblock to your life or dreams? Read more
It’s the night before the Sunburst marathon and I just picked up my packet! This is going to be AWESOME!! All of my tooth and nail fighting to return to the healthy person I used to be will be tested tomorrow. It is unbelievable I finished chemotherapy one year ago today.
I run to regain strength.
I run to give strength to others to know you can recover after cancer and be STRONGER than ever if you are willing to fight for it.
I run to raise money for cancer research.
I run to show my little girl mommy is okay.
I run to inspire anyone who thinks they can’t do something. I had a baby, major tumor removal surgery, a pulmonary embolism, and aggressive chemotherapy last year. If I can do it anyone can! Never give up! Never, ever, ever give up.
Pre-race: What a day!! Perfect running weather! As many of you know I have been training for the Sunburst Marathon on June 1st, 2013, to mark exactly 1 year post the completion of chemotherapy and I am SO EXCITED! I promised Ryan I would attempt one shorter race before attempting a marathon. He worries about me, it’s cute. :) Today is the day! My “prove-I-can-do-it” day. I am running with my sister who is also a cancer survivor! 10 year survivor and going strong!! Woooo Hoooo! You go girl! We are doing the 10k at the 5/3 Riverbank Run in Grand Rapids, MI. Start time: 8:00am!!
It’s go time! Off to the races!!!
Post-race reflections: There is something so special about the running community. It is such a great group of people. It was such an awesome feeling to run this race today. There were people cheering for the runners all along the route and I couldn’t help but smile the whole time I ran. I was so, so happy. At the 4 mile marker there was my hubby and little Gracie. I yelled “MY FAMILY” and Gracie let out a big laugh! :) What a joy it was to show her mommy is okay and doing something that requires good health. The last quarter mile I had tears of joy in my eyes. I was really doing this and it was a piece of cake! Holy Cow! Am I really this okay? It’s been a lot of hard work but I feel like I am very strong again and it hasn’t even been a year post-chemo!
Every time I see someone struggling to begin a journey to health out on my training route I want to yell, “YOU CAN DO IT!!!!”. I just had a baby, surgery, cancer, chemo, and a pulmonary embolism, and I’m doing it. YOU CAN DO IT!! YOU CAN DO IT!! YOU CAN DO IT!!!
ps: Big congrats to my sister for running and completing her longest race ever!