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Take That, Cancer! I’m Going To Be A Triathlete!

Cancer Ka Lang, Atleta Ako

This is one of those articles where the featured image alone can speak for the awesomeness of the person in it. But we believe this story deserves to be told.

Yvan Lathrell Amposta, an avid cyclist, runner, and a basketball player, is dealing with the dreaded Big C. And like all the brave cancer warriors, he refuses to surrender and chooses to tackle it head-on. Thankfully, if all goes well before his pet scan in August, he will be declared cancer-free.

DISCOVERING THE C

Yvan got diagnosed last September 2019. But months prior to that, he was already developing symptoms which he quickly shrugged off and blamed it due to lack of training and endurance.

It wasn’t until August when he first noticed that he easily gets tired and was always running out of breath. Just three minutes in during one of the games, his Dad, who is also the Assistant Coach, noticed that his face and lips were already turning black and told the Head Coach to take him out of the game.

As the Team Captain of the basketball team, Yvan didn’t take getting pulled out easily as he was eager and willing to do everything to give his time the win. But it was simply not meant to be this time.

With his basketball team taken days before the game.

After getting a thorough checkup, his x-ray and ECG revealed that aside from blurry lungs, he also had tumors around his chest and lungs which is the reason why he was finding it hard to breathe. Immediately, he was advised by his Doctor to go straight to the Emergency Room so they can start the treatment process.

FAMILY MATTERS

The eldest of three siblings, Yvan was always destined to become an athlete. His dad is a former national team for Rowing while his Mom played Volleyball in college. He picked up the basketball at the age of seven which also instantly became his first love.

Yvan and his Dad

Currently working as the conditioning coach for his son’s basketball team, it was his Dad’s work ethic and penchant for competing in different countries which inspired Yvan to be an athlete just like him.

It didn’t take long before he got picked up by his school as a Varsity player just in his second year until grade 12.

NEVER BACKING DOWN

When he got diagnosed, Yvan suffered anxiety as he thought that all his years of training and sacrifice would be turned into waste. But he chose to trust the process and continue soldiering on.

If there’s one thing being an athlete taught him, it’s that having the right mindset and attitude, combined with proper skill, plays a huge role in allowing the body to overcome any adversity thrown it’s way.

On a side note, one of the things we immediately noticed when he tweeted his now-viral post, was his Go For Gold jersey. It’s no secret that Go For Gold has been a supporter of SBR.ph Tri Series since 2017 so we asked him about it. “Every time I wear the Go for Gold Jersey, I get that feeling na I’m strong ganun. HAHAHAHA! It kinda motivates me kapag suot ko yung jersey na yun.”, said Yvan.

Even while he is undergoing chemo, Yvan always made it a point to bike and run as much as possible.

Yvan also narrated, “I started na magbike nung mga age of 14 and ngayon po we usually ride sa Lancaster City. I do laps din po doon kasi walang gaanong tao and kotse. Pero nung naging okay na po katawan ko I started doing long distances like Amadeo, Indang tapos ito po last Saturday pumunta po ako sa Kaybiang Tunnel which is the boundary of Batangas and Cavite”.

BEATING WITH THE C

Using sports as a foundation, Yvan has repeatedly stressed how cycling and having a good foundation helped him on his road to recovery. Having finished his chemotherapy last March, he also finished his radiation therapy just last June. His body his responding well as tumors continue to decrease in size.

During his eight chemo sessions, he also mentioned that despite being told by the Doctor to stop training, he still continued to cycle on the trainer and even goes out to ride every Saturday. He also goes for an occasional run.

Despite not being able to maintain a decent speed and an elevated heart rate, he still continued to push so he can still keep his fitness and not gain weight. He added that exercising forces his heart to work harder and breaking some sweat makes him feel better.

To everyone reading this, what’s your excuse?

STARTING TO TRI

Despite not being able to swim, Yvan mentioned that it’s his dream to become a triathlete.

So we gave him a challenge and mentioned that if all goes well with his treatment, there’s a slot waiting for him at next year’s SBR.ph Tri Series. Also, we committed to help find him a Coach too as he wants to learn how to swim and train the right way.

Guess what? He accepted.

See you next year, Yvan.

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A triathlete making a comeback and a true blue Scorpio. That sums it up quite nicely :)

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