As I return from Timex Team Camp, I am left with such joy and inspiration to make this year another great year both in triathlon and career. There is nothing like spending a few days with 50 of the most influential people from around the world who come together once a year for the Timex Team. Leaving Boulder, I felt a calming sense of pride and admiration for those involved in our team. Being surrounded with amazing athletes and, more importantly, people give me a perspective of the kind of footprint I want to leave in this sport someday.
The first day of camp I was reunited with all of my teammates. Friday evening, thee Dave Orlowski gave me a recap of his experience in the FIRST EVER Ironman in 1978! Dave wore a rockin’ pair of jorts and placed 3rd overall! Saturday morning I had a great time running with Barry Siff and Mike Wien, President and Vice President of USA Triathlon (USAT). After the turn around on Boulder Creek Canyon, Mike and I chatted about the current and future developments in triathlon. Saturday evening was beyond incredible as our manager, Tristan, has a way of just outdoing himself. We were at our formal dinner when Simon Whitfield, Greg Bennett, and Laura Bennett were surprisingly introduced to us. Simon Whitfield won the first ever gold medal in the Olympics in 2000. Greg and Laura Bennett are as legendary as you can imagine and two of the greatest individual endurance athletes there has ever been. They discussed with us what, "Excellence in Sport," means to them.
We closed Saturday evening with a special presentation from teammate Luis Alvarez. Luis is a 139 time Ironman finisher and the only individual to complete two Ironman on back to back days on two different continents. He shared with us his journey of climbing Mount Everest in 2016 and descending blind as he lost his vision on the descent. We wait all year for days like we had in Boulder! I am so blessed!
Now, what's new in the Glenn-Sapp establishment?! So far, 2017 hasn't been the kindest to us. But it sure has been a wild ride. Drew and I have this saying, "I don't want that ordinary love, I want that 'I got your back' kind of love." We found out a few months ago, after a year of wondering how and why the heck he had a horizontal tibial metaphysis stress fracture that took 8 months to heal, that he had a misplaced tibia tunnel from a failed ACL repair from 2010. Later to find, both his ACL and LCL were insufficient, the femoral tunnel was also misplaced, the posterior-lateral wall of the knee was blown out, medial and lateral meniscus tears were present. So, human terms, Drew needs a total overhaul of his knee. After a few orthopedic surgeons we were lucky enough to be hooked up with Dr. Vyas, a surgeon for the Pittsburgh Penguins.
Dr. Vyas sat us down on February 15th and explained to us this would be a two year recovery process with two surgeries. One week later, Drew underwent his first surgery which was to be a debridement of the ACL, meniscus repairs, removal of bone chips, and a bone graft of the tibia and femur to prepare the new tunnels for a future ACL reconstruction. Hence the stress fracture, there was not a sufficient tibia there in the first place!!! Unfortunately, the lateral meniscus tear was of the root, which would have left Drew non weight bearing for 6 weeks. Dr. Vyas decided to do this with the second surgery, in which Drew will be non-weight bearing for 6 weeks already. Dr. Vyas was also unable to graft the femur due to misplacement of the tunnel being too posterior. So, Drew now has no ACL and must let the tibial graft heal for 4-6 months prior to surgery #2. Of course, it's his right leg, so he was out of work for 10 days prior to being back to driving and walking. Dr. Vyas explained a lot has changed in regards to ACL reconstruction since 2010, and this is not the first failed surgery he has seen.
The funny caveat to all of this ironically horrible timing is that it's the year of weddings for the Sapps and Glenns! Drew's brother, Derek, is getting married on April 29th, my sister is getting married on July 22nd, and we are getting married on September 16th. So, let's think, 4 months to heal puts the second surgery between June 22 - August 22. He will be non-weight bearing for 6 weeks, minimum. Off of work even longer as he must be comfortable driving. And will require a lot of TLC from his fiancée. All of my non racing friends say, "Hey, just wait until after your wedding and honeymoon and get the surgery in October!" I can't imagine prolonging this another 4 months for Drew. He has been swimming since the age of 6 and is already going crazy being out the past year.
We are following up with Dr. Vyas every 6 weeks. He checks the X-rays of how Drew's tibia is healing which will ultimately determine the date of the next surgery. Dr. Vyas mentioned at our last appointment that there's a slight possibility Drew could be ready by the first or second week of June. Which would be ideal for the weddings!
With race season upon us, I have been asked a lot recently what my 2017 plans are. Originally they were to balance training with wedding planning, run two businesses, maintain my health and a happy relationship, and jump into a late season Ironman. Instead I have a new, and totally fun, approach to racing. After each 6 week appointment we learn if he is having surgery soon or not. This gives me the green light for the next 6 weeks. So, I just recently signed up for Florida 70.3 which is this week! Four of us from Crew Racing will be racing and staying together. I am excited and thankful to toe a long course start line. Though a bit of guilt from my end, Drew pushes me to continue to race and train.
So, what else is new? Well, I am beyond thrilled to grow my physical therapy clinic to the point where I need to hire more help. I work with the most fantastic team and as we continue to grow, I refuse to let my quality of care decline. Call it old fashioned, but surviving in private practice having autonomy in clinical practice is not as easy as it should be. I am very fortunate...and stubborn.
Crew Racing is stronger than ever. I also brought on more help in this department. We have a great line up of wonderful people, and athletes, for the 2017 season. I could not be more proud of the work I see these folks do day in and day out. I've said it before and I will say it 100x over, my goals are big but they will never be big enough to be more important than those goals I can help other people achieve. From walking for the first time in months to crossing a finish line someone only dreamed of, this is what I was made for. I love to race and train myself, but there is just nothing like the look of accomplishment on someone's face when you see them achieve a feat they once thought to be impossible.
Lastly, being a homeowner has been a blast! I just love to hustle and grind in both career and sport. I am so hungry for BIG goals to work towards. It has all been a dream. But, it certainly doesn't come without consequences. I still, though infrequently, have those moments where I am just too tired to get out of bed. Where my legs are so heavy that it gets hard to make it through the workday. I think to myself, "SHIT!! Cait, you did it again!" I pull back. Reduce the inflammation in my nervous system. Redirect my energy. And move forward. (Thank you, Drew & Katie)
With so much happening all at once in this crazy, wild 2017, I like to refer to times like this as organized chaos. Do you ever lay in bed and watch your ceiling fan spin on the highest level? That's kind of life right now. But if you focus your energy on one blade at a time, it really slows things down. I believe I am preparing myself to be a mature wife for Drew while maintaining quality with my career. I know, someday, when I look back these will be some of the best times of my life.
That's all for now!