Thank you to all of the amazing ladies who have responded to our call for athletes! We are reading through each and every one of the applications received and will do our absolute best to select women who embody the Coeur values. Women who can draw others into a lifestyle of health and fitness. Women who take training and racing seriously but not themselves. Women who inspire. Women who encourage. Women who motivate.
We received great applications from accomplished marathoners, world-class paratriathletes, CrossFitters, professional triathletes, women who have won fitness competitions, women who have just embarked on the first leg of their sports journey and everything in between. The response has exceeded our expectations and we are honored that so many amazing individuals want to join the Coeur family.
In our original call for athletes, we noted that one quality that particularly inspires us is persistence – a drive to be the best you can be despite the obstacles thrown in your way. While the official announcement of the team is still a ways off, we wanted to share the profile of one individual who really is the embodiment of what we stand for as a company.
Her name is Karen Aydelott and we are incredibly honored and excited about having her on the team.
So…how would we describe Karen? Well, Karen is—in one word—amazing. She personifies heart & courage and she wrote the book on persistence.
Karen started her endurance life as a swimmer and she noticed that the longer the race went, the more she liked it. After having children, she took up running to get back into shape and eventually started competing in marathons. Eventually, she bought an inexpensive bike and took up the sport of triathlon.
The combination of hard work and talent began to pay dividends and in 1989, she competed in Ironman Hawaii. For those of you who study the history of triathlon, 1989 was the year of the “Iron War” between Mark Allen and Dave Scott, and Karen saw the two of them on the course.
Karen continued to gain fitness and she had the results to prove it. Then, one morning in June 2006, the unthinkable happened. Karen was riding to meet up with a group when she was hit by a distracted driver.
Her injuries were serious and during the next two years she endured 11 surgeries. In July 2008, she eventually had to make the decision to have her lower leg amputated. As they say, adversity doesn’t make character as much as it reveals it and with Karen, it revealed a lot. In an absolute tribute to determination, persistence, and will, Karen decided that she would only look forward and not back.
In December 2008, just five months after the amputation, she was back on the bike! She got back in the pool and eventually, yep..you guessed it, she got back into triathlon.
Then, as if that wasn’t enough, she decided to do another Ironman and lo and behold, she qualified for Kona.
We met her at Ironman Canada and immediately added ourselves to her long list of admirers.
We cannot do her story justice in this space, so we invite you to watch the video that was produced by IronWorks Productions and posted on July 26th on Karen’s Facebook page here.
We look forward to supporting Karen as much as we can in her quest to conquer Kona in 2015 and everything in between.
If you’ll be at Ironman Arizona in a couple weeks, we encourage you to say hello to her if the chance presents itself. She is absolutely wonderful and we think you’ll be glad you did.