Ever since 2010, I celebrate life in a very special manner every November. It is my anniversary of healthier and mindful living. As a child, the daughter of a Cuban immigrant, the emphasis on doing my best and achieving the highest success possible was taught and practiced in my home. The first in my family to become a physician and practicing pediatrician was the impetus in life during my 20’s. Once I was practicing medicine I engulfed my world in my work and the lives of my patients. My family also became a new emphasis in that I became the primary caretaker and provider. In all of this success and responsibility, I lost myself. I lost my health and self-care. I weighed 324 pounds, smoked half a pack of cigarettes daily, ate fast food as a staple and spent a lot of time lying on my couch. Being diagnosed with hypertension and benign intracerebral hypertension causing peripheral vision loss was not enough for me to change. It was not until the reality of losing my father to the effects of dementia which made me realize I was not going to be able to help anyone else if I wasn’t willing to help myself first. It was a process. I stopped smoking, hired a personal trainer in November 2010, and taught myself how to use food for fuel and not for emotional support. However a daily struggle, once one admits to having issues with food as a type of emotional crutch, the fact remains that one must live in the moment and strive to be better today than yesterday in order to learn from the past.
I came upon the triathlon community by chance, and have not turned back since. I’ve always cycled and my swimming was a favorite family summer pastime in Lake Geneva. So naturally, I registered myself and my partner for the Chicago Transamerica Super Sprint in August 2012. We had no idea what we were doing but knew we had to run to a finish line. Two of the last athletes to complete the event, we looked at one another afterwards and almost simultaneously asked, “When is the next one?” We have enveloped the triathlon-endurance life into all aspects of our lives. I talk to my patients and their families differently now than I ever did before. I speak of nutrition as a type of medicine to fuel the body’s machinery, just as gas is to a car.
Naturally, I’ve gradually increased my triathlon distances over the last 6 years. September 24, 2017 I became an IRONMAN in Chattanooga. I can honestly say it has been one of the most uplifting moments in my life thus far. Training and preparing for the IRONMAN was an experience in itself. It was during this time I found the importance of HOTSHOT and its use in my athletic lifestyle. During a long training ride in July a friend of mine gave me a HOTSHOT when I started complaining about leg cramps. Within minutes of drinking the HOTSHOT my cramps subsided and I was able to successfully complete the ride as planned. I started to research HOTSHOT and its ingredients and appreciated the homeopathic and biological science behind the product. I’ve consistently incorporated HOTSHOT into every long training ride and run, including IMCHOO. The neuromuscular science behind the use of HOTSHOT’s ingredients and validity of its statements by first-hand experience has inspired me to share my experiences with friends and athletes I encounter on a daily basis. HOTSHOT is a product I will continue to use and endorse without reservation.