BENEFITING: AMERICAN LUNG ASSOCIATION OF THE NORTHEAST
ORGANIZER: AMERICAN LUNG ASSOCIATION OF THE NORTHEAST
EVENT DATE: Nov 01, 2015
I'm Russell Winwood, my wife Leanne and I are running the New York marathon as Team Russell. I sincerely thank my donors for helping reach my goal, now I need your help so Leanne can join me to form our Husband and Wife team. 'Team Russell'. Without this Lady by my side I could never have achieved what I have since being diagnosed with COPD. Our goal is now $10000, let's show the world how awesome Team American Lung Aasociation NE is ! You can donate on either Leanne's or my page, she tells a great story.
I was born in 1966 in Brisbane, Australia. I’ve had a good life thus far but have had a few health issues along the way. I decided to take to blogging to share my experiences with other people in the hope that it can help others with similar health issues.
I was diagnosed with asthma when I was young, but managed to have an active childhood playing sports and doing what most kids do. In my late teens I started smoking socially, I’m not sure why as I knew it was bad for me but continue to be a social smoker until I was 36.
Christmas Day 2002 I collapsed , too many years of not looking after myself had caught up with me in the form of a stroke. Time to change my habits , I gave up the cigarettes ,cut down drinking alcohol and started eating better, at the time of my stroke I was 88 kg about 15 kg over weight . My son had just started cycling and talked me into taking it up, best thing I ever did . The weight started coming off and I started feeling like a 36 year old should.
A friend of mine suggested I should do a triathlon, and after a little hesitation because I wasn’t a great swimmer I agreed. So for the next eight years I competed in varying distances of triathlons from sprint to Half Ironman as well as a couple of ultra marathons.
In 2011 after noticing my training times were getting slower, exercise was getting harder and I was constantly short of breath, I took myself off to the Doctors. Spirometry and lung function tests confirmed I had chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), with a FEV 1 <30% of predicted. That basically means my lungs are operating between 22-30% of there predicted capacity. I was told that I would possibly need a double lung transplant at some stage in the future. Surprisingly the scan showed that there was no damage to my lungs from smoking. My airways had become very narrow due to years of chest infections, causing a build up of scar tissue.
In May 2012, six months after diagnosis I completed my first Full Ironman Event . In 2014 I completed two more Ironman events . 2015 I want to add the New York marathon to my list and in the process shine a light on Lung Disease !