Marathon Success Story with Angela Coulombe

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In this podcast we interview Angela Coulombe, who came back from a debilitating bout of Lyme Disease to train for the 2010 NYC Marathon.

I connected with Angela several months ago through the MTA Facebook page and was able to encourage her through her marathon training. In the process I’ve come to admire and respect her.

Lyme Disease is an infection that is transmitted through the bite of an infected tick. The infection often attacks the joints, nervous system, and can even damage the heart.

At one point Angela was bedridden and needed help to complete the simplest tasks. How did she overcome so much and cross the marathon finish line? Find out in this inspiring interview.

Angela’s Bio

I was born in the US but moved to England at 17 (I have a slight accent you will hear). I Attended Notthingham Trent University and the University of Barcelona where I studied Fine Arts, majoring in Photography. I am a mother of two boys aged 12 and 7.

I’ve always been athletic. As I child I did gymnastics, dance, field hockey and ran track. I wanted to be a sprinter like my siblings, but after doing the mile warm-ups with plenty of energy to spare, the coach decided I was a long distance runner and not a sprinter. However, prior to Lyme, the furthest I had ever run was only 9-10 miles and I never considered doing anything more. I have a brown belt in TaeKwonDo and continue to attend classes working towards my black belt.

In 2007, after completing the Joan Benoit Samuelson “Beach to Beacon” 10k, I became seriously ill with Lyme Disease. I lost my ability to walk properly, dress myself, go up and down stairs without assistance, get in and out of bed, drive a car, play with my children (who were 3 and 8 at the time).

I didn’t know anything about the disease and the conventional medical establishment refused to treat me with anything more than the standard 3 weeks of doxicycline. This left me even more immobile and in constant pain. I made it my mission to learn everything I could about the disease and find an alternative treatment. I also determined that when I got well, I would do something to raise awareness about the disease and to give people with Lyme hope that they too can recover.

It took a year and a half before I felt like I had recovered. Where I could run a 7 minute mile before Lyme, my first mile thereafter took 45 minutes. I am 46 years old and now go by the name of “lymerunner”.

You can find Angela over at her blog

Also Mentioned in this Episode

The Little Rock Marathon
Little Rock, Arkansas, USA
March 6, 2011
Trevor and I will be at this race. There is still time to register!

[Quick Tip] 5 Things You Don’t Want to Be Without on Race Day

  1. Your Running Shoes
    You would be surprised how many people get so excited about their race that they forget their running shoes and are stuck buying a new pair to run in. Not good! New shoes on race day is a recipe for blisters.
  2. Your Running Clothes
    Bring your tried and true running clothes. I recommend breathable technical fabrics with sweat wicking ability.
  3. Body Glide
    This magic lubricant will keep you from getting nasty chaffing.
  4. Your Race Number and Timing Chip
    You will get this number prior to the race. Make sure you show up to the starting line with it pinned to your clothes. Don’t pin it to an outer garment that you might shed. Be sure to attach the timing chip to your shoe. If you run without a the chip your race will not be counted.
  5. Your Gear Check Bag
    Place any items you want after the race in your gear check bag. Potential items include fresh clothes, a snack or two, your car keys, and a little money.

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4 Responses to Marathon Success Story with Angela Coulombe

  1. Trevor November 28, 2010 at 3:55 pm #

    So how did you like the interview?

  2. Karin Matthiesen December 31, 2010 at 12:38 pm #

    I loved your interview with Lyme Runner. I had a similar experience, but mine was with lupus. I had run 5 marathons before being diagnosed, my symptoms were similar to those Angela experienced. When I could no longer run, I realized how much running was part of my identity. I was lucky in that my doctor took my symptoms seriously and took action. I don’t feel like another marathon yet, but I am running 30 miles a week again. Having been a runner gave me an advantage in fighting this disease and I also can really appreciate feeling well and being able to run again. Although I am not a beginning runner, I still find your podcast inspirational.

  3. Angie December 31, 2010 at 8:42 pm #

    Thanks for sharing your story Karin. I’m so glad that you’ve gotten stronger and are back to running regularly. I hope you experience health and happiness in the New Year.


  1. Lyme runner » Blog Archive » Interview with Angie & Trevor from Marathon Training Academy - December 9, 2010

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