Welcome to TriMom!

Thank you for visiting my site. I guess I should start off by telling you a bit about myself and why I am so passionate about triathlon. Most people know me as the woman who raced my first triathlon 5 months pregnant. What most people don’t know is why I raced that day. After the birth of my second child I became quite ill and no one really knew what was wrong. I felt like I was drowning. I was exhausted beyond reason. I remember sitting in my doctor’s office crying because I was so tired I was afraid to drive home. Essentially she told me that I was an overwhelmed mother.

The thing is I kept getting worse and it wasn’t postpartum. I developed a constant headache and then my right eye became sensitive to the touch, leading to my peripheral vision in the eye diminishing and my vision being blurred from time to time. It was my eye doctor who realised that it was more than being overwhelmed. He could see that my optic nerve was actually swollen and sent me to an eye surgeon. It was the surgeon who diagnosed me with hypothyroidism. My condition had gone undiagnosed for so long a feedback loop had been created in my body that had caused my pituitary gland to swell, putting pressure on my optic nerve. And for a short while I started to feel better, but the headaches started to come back – stronger and longer. I was sent for an MRI and it was discovered that I had a tumor on my pituitary gland. It wasn’t cancerous but they couldn’t tell if it was an adenoma or a cyst and I would have to wait for more tests to find out what it was exactly.

In the meantime, I had watched my brother race a triathlon in the summer and was blown away by him, by the environment and by the commitment of the people who raced that day. I could see what my brother had been talking about, the camaraderie and the determination it took to race. I decided that I wanted to try.

I was so tired of being in pain all the time and feeling completely out of control, so training for a triathlon seemed like a way to get my life back while we waited.

I joined my local Y’s triathlon group through Second Wind Conditioning and started training for a triathlon. A few months in I found out I was pregnant with my third child.  My husband, Peter, and I decided that I would keep training with the group under my new doctor’s direction. The funny thing is I started to feel better as each week passed by. Slowly the headaches started to recede, my memory started to improve, my energy started to return. It felt like my baby girl was healing me from the inside out. My coach and Peter were amazing. Peter went to the local junk yard and took the parts from 4 bikes to make me one road bike. Painted pink as per my eldest daughter’s request. We called it the Junk Yard Gem. So 5 months pregnant I lined up with all the try-a-triers and raced my first try-a-tri. I came almost dead last but I finished and waiting at the finish line was Peter and the kids. I felt on top of the world!

 

After my baby girl was born, I went back to training and signed up for the same race. This time I came 4th in my age group. I’ve been totally hooked since. At every race I hear my 3 monkeys screaming “go mummy, go!” with their cattle bells and see Peter beaming with pride. He calls himself the Elite Spectator. He can pick me out of the pack in the water and knows exactly where I should be on the course. He knows all my splits before the results are posted. He is my backbone!

 

It’s been three years, since then I’ve traded the junk yard gem in for a road bike and a TT (time trial bike), setting a new goal for myself this year. I wanted to qualify for the Canadian National Team to compete at the ITU World Championships as an age grouper. The race is in London, England next year where my family is from and where most of them still live, including my grandparents. My grandmother follows all my races and to have the chance to race in front of her is a dream come true. I qualified in Leamington, Ontario at the Leamington Triathlon Weekend this year and she was the first person I called.

This is where most people assume I have some kind of athletic background but the truth is I was a bookworm throughout school. My athletic activities were sailing and recreational tennis. After my son was born I joined my local YMCA, mostly to meet other moms and introduce the kids to other children their age. I started going up to the fitness area with my girlfriend. I was clueless how anything worked or what I was suppose to do. I would stalk her to figure out how to turn a treadmill on or how to use the ellipticals. Last fall I took the personal training courses at the Y and am now a trainer there. Now I train her!

Race season is over. There are only two seasons for triathletes, race season and training season. So now the real work begins as I start to train for world’s. I hope you will follow me as I talk about the highs and lows of training, the struggles and joys of doing it while balancing my family life and competing.

See you at the finish line,

Amy