Updated: Jun 7, 2020
Integrated Fitness of Dover owner, Candace Lord, discusses having breast cancer while trying to compete in Spartan races.
I have been an athlete my whole life. I ran track, practiced martial arts, swam competitively, and have lifted weights regularly since the age of 15. As an adult, I have stayed fit participating in OCR and road races. And, I am a personal trainer and mom of two athletic kids! Added to all that, I am a pro-level powerlifter and physique competitor. Needless to say, I had done it all—or so I thought. Nothing that I trained for could have prepared me for what I am currently battling.
Diagnosis: Stage 2 Breast Cancer
Three months ago I was diagnosed with Stage 2 breast cancer. My husband felt a lump in my breast (thank God for husbands). Consequently, I had the surgery to have the lump removed and have received two of four chemotherapy treatments. Before being diagnosed, I was planning on achieving my first Spartan trifecta this year. And, as of this moment, my plans have not changed. I am running harder and faster, and am lifting heavier. I am preparing my body for the Spartan race in Killington, Vermont this September.
Running Spartan Races with Breast Cancer
My very first Spartan race was Killington last year, and I placed top 10 in my age group in the open heat. I ran the Boston super on August 10 this year, after my first chemo treatment and faired better than expected. With the support of my doctors, husband, and team, there is no doubt in my mind that I will be able to complete Killington. I know this will be difficult, and I know that my body will hurt. Therefore, my sheer determination will be all that I have to get me through this race.
Cancer is not a death sentence. You do NOT need to give up and lay down. When life gets tough, you have to get tougher. Therefore, with the right mindset, anything is possible.
If it were not for the Spartan races, I would not feel as strong as I do because I would not have had this goal set in my mind to complete. This has given me focus, purpose, and courage. The Spartan races are literally saving my life, and I would be honored to spread the story to other people! Aroo aroo aroo!
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Taken from a closed Spartan Women’s Group on Facebook.