Teri Griege had been a high school athlete and always enjoyed sports.
She began running marathons in her forties, including Chicago, Boston and New York. Her interest in endurance events led her to triathlons, and she set her sights on the big prize: The Ironman World Championship in Kona, Hawaii.
Teri completed Ironman Louisville in 2008 and missed qualifying for the World Championship by just five minutes. Even more determined, she returned to training. Throughout the next year, Teri suffered minor injuries and was unusually sluggish and tired, but she attributed that to overtraining. When she completed Ironman Louisville in 2009 ten minutes slower than the prior year, she was certain something was wrong. Her suspicions were confirmed with a devastating diagnosis of Stage 4 colon cancer with metastases to her liver.
Teri wasn’t ready to give up and deepened her resolve to complete the Ironman World Championship. After receiving a special invitation to compete as an inspirational athlete, she trained for this grueling race while undergoing chemotherapy. Knowing she couldn’t do it alone, she assembled an army of supporters, Teri’s Troops, who helped her on her incredible journey.
On October 8, 2011, at age 50, Teri crossed the finish line in Kona.
Today, she brings her inspiring message ––Powered by Hope–– to a variety of groups and organizations.
Cancer & Fitness
In 2011 I finished the Ironman World Championship in Kona, Hawaii.
This bucket list goal was achieved two years after being diagnosed with Stage IV colon cancer; and the diagnosis was devastating one – a six percent chance of survival and a timetable of two years. Those two years before the Ironman were challenging – I endured radiation treatments and chemotherapy treatments followed by colon and liver resections. Today I continue to receive maintenance chemotherapy.
Because of my diagnosis of Stage IV colon cancer both my sisters each got a colonoscopy (ages 61 and 62), one had precancerous polys the other stage 3 colon cancer. They each have 2 daughters; 2 of the 4 daughters had precancerous polyps. My sister will be the first to tell you—I saved her life. She would never have gone for screening. We must talk about this issue, educate and encourage others. We truly can save lives.
I’m no super woman. And I’m no different than you. I made a decision that I was going to beat this. To do that I employed all the tools that were and are available to me – my army of supporters, family and friends, my Doctors, and the strength to believe in myself and just keep trying
That’s what I wish to offer to you – a message of hope and power. Even in the most trying and difficult circumstances, whether they be physical, mental, or emotional, we can push through and overcome.
Powered By Hope
Teri is the CEO, and founder of Powered By Hope, a nonprofit foundation dedicated to providing hope, strength, peace and education to cancer patients.
"When you hear the words ‘You have Cancer’ you have just entered the greatest race of your life.”
Our foundation is predicated on H-O-P-E – which stands for – How Ordinary People Endure.
There is something unique about sharing a tangible symbol of hope to empower and reassure survivors/fighters that they are not alone, and to take this Journey one day at a time.