If you have found this page, I'm guessing that you may already know part of my story. For those that do, you can skip the next couple paragraphs. For those that don't, read on!
A year and a half ago, I would not have imagined myself writing this. That was when I was in the hospital, post lung removal surgery for lung cancer, struggling to take a walk down the hall and back. It felt sooooo far! I pretty much thought my dreams of an active lifestyle were done. I remember lying in my bed at home during my "recovery," watching the highlights of the 2018 Hawaii Ironman race with tears in my eyes thinking, "well, that is never going to happen now." Under the circumstances, it seemed truly laughable that the thought ever crossed my mind. Of course, now that I was someone who just beat lung cancer, I was pretty much just lucky to be alive. Things were definitely going to be different now. I might as well just relax and become Mr. Couch Potato. No one would blame me for that. Right?
But I have never been one to just settle. My family is so active, I couldn't just sit there. I've watched my wife and children do amazing things. How could I do less? So, I started my rehab with walking. At first it was just down the block and back with walking sticks. Then it was a little more and then a little more. I started going back to the gym and trying to get stronger. It was a very slow process. Well, a year later, my wife, Heather, said we needed to go do something big and hairy to celebrate our one year post-cancer anniversary. So we got on our bikes and rode... and rode and rode. 40 miles later, I thought, forget this lung cancer stuff, I'm going for it.
So, what am I going to do? Hopefully something ridiculous. First, I want to show everyone and especially other lung cancer patients that a lung cancer diagnosis (or a lung removal) doesn't have to mean the end of an active life. It doesn't have to be. Life is different on the other side but it's not over. The human body is an amazing thing and when combined with the human spirit we can accomplish amazing feats. We can be survivors who don't just survive, we LIVE!
So, I have committed to training for and completing the Santa Cruz Ironman 70.3 race in September, 2020. I know. Crazy, right? Along the way, I am going to raise funds for the GO2 Foundation for Lung Cancer and my goal is $7,030. Get it? Ironman 70.3, $7,030? It's an audacious goal for me athletically and financially. I know that I'll be better just for making the effort and any money I raise will help to go support programs for early detection and better care for future lung cancer patients just like me. So, maybe they don't have to lose a lung as part of their treatment. Maybe with a couple more scientific breakthroughs funded by the GO2 Foundation, the standard of care will evolve to the point where treatment is possible while still maintaining a full and healthy set of lungs followed by full and healthy lives. That's my hope. That's our goal.
I came across a quote recently that I think is perfectly apropos to this situation. It's from Hubert H. Humphrey. "Oh, my friend, it's not what they take away from you that counts, it's what you do with what you have left." I have my own personal version of that which goes, "It's not how much lung you have left that counts, it's how much heart you have."
So, please help me support the GO2 Foundation For Lung Cancer by making a contribution to my fundraiser and sharing this page with your family and friends and anyone you think might be interested. Every dollar I raise will advance GO2 Foundation For Lung Cancer's great cause!
Below you can check out a video about the GO2 foundation and a race recap video from the 2018 Santa Cruz race.
Also here is a link from Charity Navigator that gives the GO2 Foundation high marks for it's charitable efforts and financial management. FYI, GO2 is not providing me any actual training or race support in this effort. All your dollars go straight to the foundation to help fight lung cancer.
Together, we can make a difference!