October 15, 2015 marks a significant day in the history of Triumph Fitness. 10 years ago on this same date, I welcomed the very first class of cancer survivors to Triumph Fitness. I remember it like it was yesterday. The nervousness and excitement of launching this new program that I hoped would help cancer survivors grow strong again. Ten participants had entrusted themselves to Triumph. And so it all began…
Throughout the years, there have been many ups and downs on this roller coaster ride called Triumph. But the one constant has been the people. I have now had the privilege of meeting hundreds of survivors who have participated in Triumph Fitness. I have heard the stories of their struggles with cancer and the aftermath of treatment. I have been humbled by their courage and strength in fighting this relentless disease. It has been a privilege to meet each participant and truly an honor to become a positive part of their cancer journey, helping them to regain a sense of normalcy in their lives. Reminding them of their potential. Showing them that their abilities far exceeded what they anticipated.
We plant a seed that very first day, sharing stories so that everyone understands that they are on common ground. That Triumph is a safe haven for a cancer survivor. That their time with us will be spent in a nurturing encouraging environment. We remind our participants that they are individuals with much to contribute to this world. We watch them grow over 12 weeks.
None of the magic of Triumph would be possible without our incredible team of instructors. I am incredibly proud of our Triumph team. Our instructors excel at providing guidance, adapting exercise routines to the individual needs of our participants, and at encouraging everyone by celebrating their accomplishments. They gently push our participants to work hard, but they never push anyone past their comfort zone. And they wrap all of their instruction in a package tied together with compassion and empathy. They are tuned into our participants on both a physical and emotional level. Magically, after 12 weeks, we are able to set our graduates free to continue exercising on their own with this new found knowledge and confidence.
Being involved with Triumph has been a labor of love for me for over 10 years now. I wouldn’t change a minute of it. To attend a graduation class and to hear how Triumph has helped someone is the fuel that keeps me going. What could be better than knowing that you have helped to make a difference in someone’s life? Facing a cancer diagnosis and subsequent treatment strips a person of their identity. Through Triumph, we reintroduce our participants to themselves and help them discover so much more about themselves.
Triumph has done the very same thing for me. It has given me a true purpose in life, pushed me to step outside my comfort zone to advocate for something I believe in passionately. Triumph is a part of my soul.
So on October 15th, I celebrate our graduates. I celebrate our instructors, volunteers, and Board Members who all played a part in making this journey so special. I celebrate Triumph!
Pam Whitehead, Founder