Featured Athlete: Meet Joyce Kelly

I am Joyce Kelly, a successful realtor for Nathan Grace, an active member of the MetroTex Association of Realtors, and a competitive Playtri paratriathlete.  I have always enjoyed running, even though I was a very slow and awkward runner.  About 3.5 years ago, I was diagnosed with CMT disease, (Charcot Marie Tooth disease), a progressive, degenerative nerve disease affecting 1 in 2500 people worldwide, which will eventually rob me of the ability to walk or use my arms and hands without assistance.  Eventually, swallowing and breathing will be difficult and I will be deaf. 

My doctors at UTSW actually suggested I stop running and strength training immediately.  With that in mind, I hired a triathlon coach, Playtri's Coach Morgan Hoffman, and together, we never looked back.  Instead, Coach Morgan had me competing in sprints and Olympics as a paratriathlete.  My balance and coordination are better than ever.  We never focus on the disability -- it's just another triathlon challenge -- just like all triathletes face.  We focus on the ability.  With Coach Morgan's guidance, last year I qualified for USAT Paratriathlon Nationals.  This year, Coach Morgan will guide me to my first 70.3.  Coach Morgan also contacted Dr. Robert Chetlin with the Centers for Disease Control and I am now a human lab rat soon to be involved in an exercise and gene therapy protocol study for CMT.  

To help raise money for this medical study, I approached the MetroTex Board of Directors and presented my idea to host a run event and raise money for this study.  They agreed and asked me to chair the race event, the MetroTex DFW Get Fit Race - a chip timed 10K, 5K and a Family / Pet 1 mile fun run.  Playtri is race directing and next Saturday, May 3, 2014, the race will finally happen!  This would be a great training run for your next triathlon.  Please sign up to run so I can be one of the first lab rats to get the cure!!!