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My Health Hurdles Are Opportunities Not Limiters

Stephen Brown Health Hurdles Are Opportunities Not Limiters Run Tri Bike Magazine

From Soccer To MultiSport

A multi-sport athlete (soccer, basketball, baseball) growing up in Suburban Philadelphia, I made my to Cabrini University in Radnor, Pennsylvania on a soccer scholarship. I earned many honors, including Most Valuable Player recognition, and a Distinguished Alumni award for my charitable work in the community.

After college, I was fortunate to receive several pro soccer tryouts. They didn’t work out but I played semi-professionally for a number of years in the Majors Division of the United Soccer League for the German club Danubia.

In 1987, I traded in my soccer shoes and turned to the flexibility of multisport racing. I have never looked back. Since 1987, I have raced countless triathlons and multisport events of all distances. They range from marathons and ultra marathons to Ironman triathlons. I have been fortunate to have many top age group finishes.

My Health Hurdles Are Opportunities Not Limiters

In February of 2006, life threw me a curve ball when I was diagnosed with an incurable form of blood cancer known as chronic lymphocytic leukemia. I wasted no time and underwent four rounds of chemotherapy. I was able to maintain my baseline fitness level by running home after treatments and I, quickly, reached complete remission. By July of that same year, I was back to racing triathlons. A few months later, and just 7 months after my diagnosis, “RemissionMan” crossed the finish line of my 8th career iron distance triathlon (2.4-mile swim, 112-mile bike, 26.2-mile run).

I have fought through multiple relapses of leukemia. Each time I have used endurance sports as a weapon in my arsenal against cancer. Running home from treatments and racing throughout these treatments has allowed me to tackle these relapses head on. To date, I have endured 54 rounds of chemotherapy trying to keep my disease in check.

Staying Involved and Giving Back

In addition to staying busy with training and racing, I am also a certified triathlon and running coach. I use these activities as a way to stay involved in multiport, and raise funds and awareness for significant causes.

In my “spare time”, I work closely with organizations such as The American Cancer Society, The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, Grassroot Soccer, The Leukemia Research Foundation, and HEADstrong Foundation in promoting and supporting their events.

I’ve also written several books discussing everything from fitness and triathlon, to my cancer diagnosis and my passion for living life to the fullest.

Our Health Hurdles Are Opportunities Not Limiters

In 2019, my wife and I were dealt another health blow. My wife, Mary Grace, suffered a life altering stroke during brain aneurysm surgery.  This meant that we became each other’s primary caregivers, while being patients ourselves.

With her mobility limited, we acquired a running wheelchair. We decided to launch Team Relentless Grace to be able to embrace running and racing together.

“I feel my cancer diagnosis has opened many more doors than it has shut and created more opportunities than it has taken away.”


Publisher’s Note:

Every person’s journey is unique and inspiring. Your story is valuable. You may be a cancer survivor or had a weight loss challenge. Maybe your start was to push your limits. Regardless of where you got started we want to hear from you and tell your story.

Share your story with us HERE and we will contact you to chat and get your story published on our site and social media pages.

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Stephen Brown RemissionMan Cancer Survivor Run Tri Bike Magazine
I draw parallel lines between the challenges we face in sport and those we face in life and try to use my involvement in the multisport world as a tool to encourage people to break through barriers and understand that all things are possible.