An Athlete’s Journey to Thrive with Cancer

Teri Griege was deep into her training for the 2011 Ironman World Championship in Kona, Hawaii when she learned she had Stage 1V colon cancer. Not only was she entering the greatest race of her life but she was also fighting for her life.

Despite the devastating diagnosis—and the negative effects of the resulting surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation—she worked toward her goal with even more intensity and focus. Her strength of spirit would carry her across the finish line at the Ironman World Championship—and would carry her on to more victories as an athlete, a “cancer thriver,” and an advocate for colon cancer awareness and treatment.

As Teri continues to battle recurring cancer, she draws on her experience to help others navigate (or avoid) a similar struggle. She speaks about her journey in an episode of the Jennasis Speaks podcast and in her book Powered by Hope: The Teri Griege Story.

Helping Others Survive and Thrive

Determined to not only survive but thrive, Teri boils down her journey of fighting a life-threatening illness to three critical lessons:

  • Never give up
  • You are never too old
  • You are never alone

In an effort to spread her insight and encouragement to others, Teri authored the autobiography Powered by Hope. She has used the book to raise funds for cancer treatment research by organizations such as Colorectal Cancer Alliance, Pedal the Cause and American Association for Cancer Research.

Teri is also the founder of the Powered by HOPE (How Ordinary People Endure) Foundation, which was launched in 2014 to provide support and hope to anyone receiving cancer treatment. The foundation also fields nominations from medical professionals who want to honor their patients, as well as family members and friends who want to honor those they love who have been affected by cancer. To date, the foundation has presented more than 300 Medals of Hope and more than 400 Coins of Courage.

While Teri has received a myriad of honors from local and national organizations—including the Colon Cancer Alliance Sapphire Award, the Women of Achievement Award in St. Louis, Missouri, and the WunderGlo Foundation Cancer Warrior Award—she says her greatest reward is helping others face their own race with cancer by sharing her experience.

Listen to Her Story Firsthand

To hear Teri’s inspirational story—including how her efforts have not only impacted individuals and organizations far and wide but also have saved lives in her own immediate family—be sure to catch this episode of the Jennasis Speaks podcast.

 Jennasis Speaks is a platform that empowers women to safely share their stories, promoting healing and growth through the power of collective vulnerability and acceptance. Believing that “every woman has a story… and every story matters,” founder Jennifer Malcolm gathers stories of women through Jennasis Speaks —and invites listeners to connect to help find their own paths to passion and purpose.

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