OTTERDOTTER
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I'm a 48 y.o. graduate student soccer, theatre, and music mom. These pictures you’re looking at are 10 years old. A tough decade. I'm not brave enough to show you what I look like now.

The breast cancer I have been fighting for 5 years has now come back. I’m currently recovering from chest surgery. Radiation treatments are scheduled to start in two weeks. After that comes Lupron shots and an aromatase inhibitor.

Wimpy is my secret name. VERY low pain threshold. My immune system is "delicate." Every little virus goes straight to my lungs, which are scarred from many episodes of pneumonia. I take 5 medications every single day to control asthma, yet still, breakaway asthma requires courses of prednisone every so often. I use my bronchodilator many times a day. And a nebulizer before emergency room trips.

I am a candidate for giving up and just letting my body and Circumstance pull me down the hill toward a complacent, ugly death.

But I choose to hold on with all my might to the possibility that I can get a small walk, a small swim, a small couple of yoga asanas, and maybe a small paddle into every day. That is, unless my body really needs rest.

The trick is how to acknowledge my body’s need for rest as a means of optimizing my situation without collapsing into coach potato mode. It’s so hard to stay inspired about exercise when I am dying to get out there for a workout but my body can’t do it for one more day. Or three more days. Or fourteen more days. It’s too easy to succumb to bitterness and apathy. That’s when my little binge disorder seizes control. I seem to have only two settings: extreme yes, or extreme no. A frustrated performance fiend. Moderation is such an art form!

I don’t know yet how I’m going to work this out. But as these cancer treatments are progressively worse, my choice becomes more and more clear. Up or down?

I choose uphill. Moderately.


Member Since: 8/1/2006

Fitness Minutes: 21,962

My Goals:
walk 5k by my birthday
swim easy mile workouts
strengthen core for balance
paddle easy


My Program:
swim 3x week
yoga/pilates/lift/resistance training 3x/wk
elliptical or walk 3x/wk
rest when my body needs to



Personal Information:
I am a mother of 3.
I just started graduate school.



Other Information:
2002: 225lbs at end of pregnancy--severe degeneration in SI joint and hips

2003: third pregnancy--6 weeks in a wheel chair at the end

2004: prednisone for asthma, walks with a double stroller just 10 minutes at a slow pace

2006: chronic upper and lower respiratory infections, pilates classes

2007: 178 lbs. began treatment with naturopath then started paddling--pilates has fixed my back and pelvis--got up to almost 10 k runs!!!

2008-2009 competitive paddling, swimming, and running

2010--developed arthritis in shoulder, cut back on paddling and swimming, gained weight again

2011--balancing joint mobility with pain management and asthma medications

2012--synchronous bilateral breast cancer (stage II) mastectomy

2013--paddled 7 mile race

2014--ran 8.8k race, salpingectomy, bilateral DIEP flap reconstruction

2015--psychiatric hospitalization, torn MCL right knee, started risperidone

2016--torn hamstring




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