Subscribe to It Has Nothing to Do with Age by Email Follow Tusk95664 on Twitter It Has Nothing to Do with Age: Don Nichols ,Overcoming Cancer , Polio and Being the Best He Can
It Has Nothing To Do With Age provides self-help principles. The inspirational stories give concrete illustrations of overcoming many of life's challenges. Difficulties pertaining to depression, grief, divorce, and death are presented and worked through by the participants. Physical impairments, injuries, overcoming issues with weight, alcohol, and nicotine are also dealt with and resolved by the athletes.

This book provides a model on how to overcome some of the difficulties that confront all of us . Further, this read sheds a beacon of light on preventive measures for good physical and mental health. Research demonstrates that exercise is an important component in treating such ailments and debilitating illness such as depression, stroke, heart disease, brain or cognitive malfunction,and Alzheimer's disease.

I suggest that proper exercise can be used as a preventive measure for psychological, cognitive, and physical health as well. Follow my prescription and lead a better, more fulfilling, and healthier life.

Friday, March 2, 2012

Don Nichols ,Overcoming Cancer , Polio and Being the Best He Can

In 1973, I left the faculty at Oakland Community College in Farmington Hills, Michigan to take a  teaching position at California State University, San Bernardino. Last week, Steve Lesser, a first cousin of mine, currently employed at Oakland Community College as a financial aid student advisor sent me information about Don Nichols. While at Oakland Community College,  my friend Don was Dean of Students.  I have not seen nor heard about Don since.
In 1996, when Don  was 59 years old he made a decision to  bike 2,000 miles across America to raise money for charity. Don wanted to give back to help babies born with birth defects as  the March of Dimes paid for his polio surgeries.  He said he wanted to prove “I could accomplish what others thought was a crazy goal.”  Don spent seven years of his childhood on crutches, in wheelchairs, with leg braces.
Don purchased a garage sale 10 speed bike and two books on cycling for one dollar each.  He then started training by biking many hours week after week.  He quickly found out about the sore butt syndrome, and eventually overcame the soreness.  He then began to enjoy the rides, and bought a 21 speed TREK.  From 1996 to 1997, he logged over 3,000 miles in training.  Michael Bolton’s “I Can Go the Distance” and Bob Seger’s “Against the Wind” assisted him as he biked down Jefferson Avenue against the backdrop of the Ambassador Bridge that connected Detroit with Ontario, Canada on June 21, 1997.  After about a month on the road, Don reached Key West, Florida. By September 1, Don and his wife had collected over $20,000 for the March of Dimes.  Don had accomplished both goals.
Just this week, I received a letter from Don.  Among other things, he told me that he left the cold weather in Michigan because of post—polio syndrome and relocated in Florida.  He got polio when he was three, and had corrective surgeries that permitted him to walk and run when he was 11.  In 1972, he started jogging and has run over 36,000 miles, these past 40 years. His current goal is to run a marathon.  He has a problem because he is unable to keep enough weight on to do the training.  His current regimen is running about 25 miles a week and biking about 70.  He says exercise on a regular basis, has worked for him, has provided energy, goes without colds or flu and does not take any medication. As a two-time cancer survivor (malignant melanoma), Don is a living testament as to overcoming, empowerment, and being the best that he can.
Don you are an inspiration to all.  I am pleased that we have reconnected after all these years.   Keep healthy.  My aunt Eva told me growing up “If you have your health, you have it all.”  She was right.


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