Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Wonderful You Wednesday: Do It Because You Can

Welcome to Wonderful You Wednesday at My Life as a Trimommy.  This is an ongoing series where I will have a post by myself or a guest that focuses on body image and self esteem.  This week's guest blogger is my twitter friend and fellow blogger, Donna.   Check out her website and blog, My Fitness Year.

Do It Because You Can!

Do you have things that you do, just because you can?

Do you choose to do new things, even if you know you will not excel?

For me, I’ve chosen to do triathlon. And, I know that I’m never going to be the fastest or the most elegant athlete out there when it comes to the swim bike run.

But… I CAN do these things. And I’m thankful that I CAN... So I do.

In 2004 I was diagnosed with a progressive degenerative nerve disease, Charcot Marie Tooth.  Receiving a diagnosis of CMT was like receiving a welcome to the unknown. No one can say how CMT will progress. No one can say if it will progress. And no one can say what the future will be like in terms of mobility for someone with CMT.

The only thing I knew was that getting and staying strong would be a good thing. So I decided to take up triathlon –because I could.

I’m learning to run again after a 30 year break. I’m managing biomechanical challenges. I’m doing things that doctors once advised me would never be possible. It hasn’t been easy. But one thing my father always told me was that “nothing good comes easy.”

I’ve had to look inside, tap into my determined self, and explore and test my limits. I’ve had to make myself uncomfortable. When you do something for the first time – whatever that might be – each step along the way involves self discovery. For me, triathlon has taught me so much about myself, both physically and mentally.

I’ve had to develop patience. I think it is human nature to focus on what we are good at doing. For someone whose nerves don’t communicate well with her muscles, choosing to swim bike and run means that I’m doing things that may not naturally suit me. I’ve had to accept who I am, that I won’t be the best in the field, and instead I’m focusing on the joy that comes from being able to swim bike and run. The action is the reward in itself.

The cycle – of learning something, trying it out, testing myself, learning from the process, and doing it again – has been amazing. I have gently pushed my limits, redefined what I though was possible, and repeated the process, over and over.

I ran my first continous pain free mile in January 2010. I ran my first continuous 10km in August. And I completed my first Olympic distance triathlon this year.

I’ve learned that CAN is completely within my reach. That anything – with patience, tenacity, perseverance and a bit of redefinition – is possible. And I know that nothing should be taken for granted. Because for each of us, who knows what the future may hold.

September 19th to 26th is CMT Awareness Week. CMT is the most common neurological disorder,  impacting 1 in 2500 people, each differently. To learn more about CMT please visit To contribute to find a cure, please visit


  1. How inpsiring! Thank you for sharing.

  2. Thank you Heather! And thank you Kelly for letting me share my story on your wonderful blog!


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