“Triathlon has quite literally given me my life back,” says Grace Coller, 42, a blogger and mother of two living in Shelburne Falls, Mass.
Does that sound like hyperbole to you? Well, it’s not. A few short years ago, Grace, who suffers from chronic migraine syndrome, endometriosis, PCOS, asthma, paroxysmal atrial fibrillation, and Ehlers-Danlos syndrome, spent whole days lying in bed with the lights off, racked by pain, having been forced to give up her job as a special educator. Today she is a thriving member of her local endurance athlete community and getting fitter every day.
After years of suffering, a special, medically prescribed diet and exercise program provided Grace with an initial foothold toward recovery. She then hired a coach and began participating in triathlons and aquathons, with ever-increasing levels of success. Earlier this year, after parting ways with her second coach, she discovered the 80/20 system and decided to give it ago. “My expectations were exceeded,” she says of her experience so far. “My fitness level is higher than it has been in two years, and has come at no cost to my body in regards of injury or unwellness. I would actually say that I have enjoyed my training more on this program than I have in years!”
The next time you find yourself tempted to complain about a minor injury or some other small setback affecting your fitness, think of Grace. “I never, ever feel sorry for myself for battling chronic illness,” she says. “This ‘tragedy’ has essentially given me a healthy diet, a chance to compete at World Championships on Team USA, piles of sporty friends with incredible integrity, and a generally wonderful life.”