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On August 30, 2020, I will participate in Ironman Canada. That is 2.4 miles of swimming, 112 miles of biking and 26.2 miles of running.
I last did this race in August of 2011 and it was my last Ironman. In the intervening years, much has happened including my sister having a major flare of her ulcerative colitis and almost dying. In 2016, while she was recovering, I decided to do my part to find a cure for these horrible diseases and have been fundraising for Team Challenge ever since.
In the meantime, my sister's journey continues. She recovered from her major flare and in 2017 she did her first triathlon! In 2018 she Raced in Orange to raise money for Team Challenge and did the Sprint race at Wildflower. But soon after, she was diagnosed with chronic kidney inflammation (a side-effect of her IBD treatments) and had to stop working out. She concentrated on other goals, got married, and moved to Tennessee! Now, her kidneys are behaving so she's hoping to return to triathlon in her new home state.
CCFA has also made some good progress during that time. But we still don't have a cure and the treatments that are available still cause additional health problems as my sister's journey shows. In the meantime, recent research has shown the number of people affected by IBDs is growing. It's over 3 million in the US and over 5.6 world-wide (1 in 100 people!) and more and more children are being diagnosed with an IBD.
This is not acceptable to me and I am bound and determined to do something about it.
That is why, when I heard Ironman Canada has returned to Penticton, I decided to really push myself this year and signed up to take on the Ironman distance again.
This will be a big undertaking and, to be honest, I'm a little bit scared. But it will all be worth it in the end. I will use your donations to motivate me to the finish and the Crohn's & Colitis Foundation will use them to help us get closer to a real cure for Crohns and Colitis.
Won’t you please consider making a donation today?
About Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis
Known collectively as inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD), Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis affects almost 1 in 100 people. They are painful, medically incurable diseases that attack the digestive system. Crohn's disease may attack anywhere along the digestive tract, while ulcerative colitis inflames only the large intestine (colon). Symptoms may include abdominal pain, persistent diarrhea, rectal bleeding, fever, and weight loss. Many patients require numerous hospitalizations and surgery. Most people develop the diseases between the ages of 15 and 35; however the incidence is increasing in children.
The Crohn's & Colitis Foundation is the largest non-profit, voluntary, health organization dedicated to finding cures for inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD). The Foundation’s mission is to cure Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis, and to improve the quality of life of children and adults who are affected by these diseases. The Foundation works to fulfill its mission by funding research; providing educational resources for patients and their families, medical professionals, and the public; and furnishing supportive services for those afflicted with IBD.
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Ms. Marie L Hughes
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