In April 2014, I was 48 years old and diagnosed with Stage 3 Triple Negative Breast Cancer. 7 months ago, I finished my last radiation treatment – the last phase of an almost year long battle that took me through 16 rounds of chemo, bilateral mastectomies with lymph node removal and 33 radiation treatments. It was the toughest year of my life!
I am so thankful I am a Crossfitter and have an amazing box that surrounded me with love, support and never treated me like I was ill. I was able to scale my WODs and continue to be active during all of my treatment. Because I had all my lymph nodes removed on one side and radiation on that side, I had issues with my range of motion as well. I have to wear a sleeve with traveling and any exercise. My range of motion has gotten much better – almost 100%! I started swimming as rehab and used strokes where my arms stayed under water, which was a great compression for my arm. With massage and stretching exercises, my range of motion has gotten much better. I’m forcing myself to go slowly with overhead weighted movements, and I’m at the age I listen to my body.
I’m a lifetime Weight Watchers member – still working on getting to my goal weight (this is a story all it’s own LOL). I’m back to Crossfit 3 times a week and loving every minute of it! I was doing CF a year before diagnosis and instead of seeing all this as a setback, I’m seeing it as a time to really focus on technique and I know I’m so much better at my movements now. I am a work in progress, but I know I am stronger physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually because of my cancer journey. God is so Good!
In addition to Karen being our TOTALLY BA Customer of the Month, she was also Crossfit Leesville’s Athlete of the Month AND just participated in Barbells for Boobs, with the event raising over $4000!! To see more amazing pics, check out Crossfit Leesville on Facebook!
Thank you, Karen, for the honor of sharing your story with the T2T Community!