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The Chicago lakefront where I'll be running tonight. Photo by Max Wolfe

Yesterday started at 4:30 a.m. with a workout at the gym lifting weights with my trainer, Laura Weiner. She’s a 22 year old bottle of energy and joy. I get to hear about the recent trip to Puerto Rico, the new apartment and young men in general while she comes up with such clever ways to get the remaining muscles in my left leg to wake back up again. That’s the leg that I lost some of the tendons and muscles to cancer and I’ve been learning there’s still more to do.

After the gym was a full day of work before I rushed down the highway to my first swim class as part of the beginner triathlon training with Mo Wills and Lara Mele of Infiniti Tri in Chicago. That first lap I thought I was going to have a very long summer. I took in a little water and just could not relax, despite Lara gently pointing out how much that might help. But eventually, I was able to let the water do some of the work and after Mo refined my fish-flopping it got easier and easier. I caught a view of myself in the mirror afterwards and saw a look of joy on my face with no worries about how I looked or how I performed. I was 10 years old all over again. As it turns out, my anxiety and re-evaluating for the entire week before the swimming was really the hard part. Tonight, my first group run in 12 years by the Chicago lakefront. Here I go!

Keep the conversation going with me and let me know how you’re challenging yourself this summer.

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