I ignored the pain for a long time, like a lot of endurance athletes. In my 30s I found out I had a leg length discrepancy and starting having pain; it took ten years of increasing pain and reducing range of motion, before I finally gave in and had hip replacement surgery on the left side. Nine years later I had the right hip replaced as well.
Endurance athletes end up with a lot of overuse injuries and I’ve found over my racing career that massage is a huge factor in recovery, both as a cure and as a preventative measure against injury. I certainly found it to be vital on my own road to recovery, and within 6 months after my first hip replacement surgery, I completed my 6th Ironman.
Sports have been a huge part of my life since I was young, including wrestling in high school and college. I ran my first 2 marathons my junior year in high school. As an adult, I found that triathlons are the best for me because they are the perfect mix of a solo, personal challenge, with social training rides and runs. So far I have finished 19 Ironman Triathlon races.
In 2007, I decided to enter East West College of Healing Arts to become a Massage Therapist as a way to bring my passion for sport full circle. During my education, I found Thai massage to be the perfect compliment to endurance sports, where the client is put through a series of passive stretches, compression of muscles and movement of joints. Thai massage helps with posture, range of motion and circulation, all of which are vital to athletes, and it has done wonders for my core strength and flexibility as well.