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Wednesday, April 08, 2009

April Athlete of the Month

What a great opportunity I have through my blog to show case people who can inspire all of us regardless of what we do. Slowly I am putting together a nice network of clot survivors that a story to tell. I am very excited to continue to extend this network and include as many people as I can. Who knows how many of this posts I can do but as long as I learn about a come back story I am going to post it for everyone to see.

April's Athlete of the month is a great example of this network expanding. Someone I knew from the early start of the Clot Buster told me about this person and after a couple of emails I was able to have him on board, answering my favorite questions that I know all of you out there are looking forward to read...

Please let me introduce to you Mr. QUINN WILLIAMS the Clot Buster's April Athlete of the Month. Let's read on to learn more about Quinn and how he as returned to do what he loves.
1) What is you sport/activity of choice? Why do you enjoy it?
My sport/ activity is time trials, dualthons and cyclocross. I am not sure why I enjoy it. I just do and it feels right when I am doing it.
2) How did you get started in that sport?
I was a runner, but I developed stress fractures in my legs. My Doctor recommend that I try biking for cross training. I stared Biking and I fell in love with it.

3) What is the latest milestone you achieved or plan to achieve? (Long bike ride, some race coming up or that you did)
My goal for this coming season is to become a better racer, and finish in the top of my category.

4) Tells about your clotting episode. Are you on blood thinners now? How long were you out of commission?
In July 2008, I was competing in a dualthon. It was a very hot day, and the race was brutal. It was a 3.5 mile trail run, 25 mile bike with very steep climbs, followed by another 3.5 trail run. After the race I jumped in my car and drove 3 hours to a cabin that my in-laws had rented for the weekend. ( this was a bad Idea) The next day I went for a nice log recovery ride. The ride went well but I was a bit tired, but after all I just had a race the day before. As the weeks went on I noticed that my runs and bike rides were getting slower and slower. So I figured I was over training again. I took a few day off and I noticed that my calf muscles felt like I had pulled them. That struck me as odd, because I had taken the last few days off. I returned to my training with a 5 mile tempo run, and I struggled to make it through the workout. I decided to go to the doctor, and as luck would have it my primary Doctor was on vacation, so I had to see someone else. I describe my symptoms, as shortness of breath and feeling fatigued during my training. I did not mention my sore calf because it went away after I started exercising. The doctor diagnosed me with exercise-induced asthma. She sent me home with an inhaler and the next day I continued my training. The inhaler helped a bit but I knew something else was wrong.I took a few more day off and during this time my leg began to swell, and it was hard for my to stand up. I decided to check out web MD and diagnosed myself with a DVT. I then went to the ER and had a cat scan to confirm it. They found multiple DVT in my legs. They sent me home with some warfin and told me to see my primary Doctor the next day. I got an apt. the next morning and my Doctor was outraged that they did not check my lung so he ordered me to get another cat scan. The cat scan should that my lung were covered with pulmonary embolisms. Again they sent me home, and told me to rest for a few days. When I got home it was very painful to stand up, and If I was up to long I would feel like I was going to pass out. So I went back to the ER and they admitted me.I spent 6 day in the hospital, while the got my INR numbers in the right range. My Doctor told me that I could start biking again once I was able to stand up. When I left the hospital I still was unable to stand up and If I did it was very painful.
5) When were you able to get back into your activity? How did it feel that first time?
I laid low for about a week, and I decided to jump on my bike. I hooked up my bike to my fluid trainer and did an easy 20 min workout. ( at this point I still could not stand)The next day I went 25 min and noticed that it seemed to be helping my legs. Soon I was up to an hour at an easy pace. I returned to racing just before the first cyclocrooss race, and I did awful. It was very hard to breath and my recover rate was horrible. I finished the season off at the back of the pack in every race. But I was racing, and alive.

6) What is your favorite piece of gear for your favorite activity? (Bike brand, running shoes, perhaps a running singlet or the Clot Buster's Running Polka-Dot Technical Shirt...)
My favorite gear is my fluid trainer, hart rate monitor and my spinervill DVDs.My favorite bikes are my Salsa El Go Go time trail bike and my Jamis Nova Pro cyclocross bike.

7) How much are you getting out doing your sport?
Right now I am in my off season, right now I am doing lots of strength training with kettlebells, yoga, kickboxing, and aerobase bike rides on the trainer. ( to much snow to be outside). I typically workout 6 days a week, around 2 to 2.5 hours per workout.You can view my log at
8) What is your favorite food? Either generally or after a workout. For me there is nothing better than a Chipotle Burrito...
After workout shake, Whey protein, banana and a bunch of peanut butter mixed in a blender.

9) If you could go some place to visit and explore, where would like to go?

10) What would like to say to someone who is going through a clotting episode, perhaps very similar to yours? How can people return to do what they enjoy? Tells about your concerns and what you look out after as you got back.
My only advice is get back in the game. Listen to your body and be prepared to take it slow

Well it is clear that a blood clot will not stop Quinn from doing what he enjoys. It is remarkable that after being competitive he went out there to race, once he was able, and although he did not finished well in the races he was out there enjoying the chance of being there.

Quinn, THANK YOU so much for sharing your story with all of us. I know that you will get back to your peak performance and place well within your age group in every race that you do.

THANK YOU for inspiring others in the same boat as you and for showing them that it is possible to return to do the things that you love.

I know that you love the Clot Buster's polka-dot jersey and although I don't have any available right now you will be one of the first ones to know when they become available... you need to have the polka-dots to spread the word out there in sunny California!

Thanks for reading,

The Clot Buster

P.S.= If you have the chance please checkout Quinn's website @ pretty cool stuff he has on there to help you track you training.

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My 100th Triathlon Finish !!!

My 100th Triathlon Finish !!!