Tonya MacNicol

Tonya MacNicol

I’m a Crossfit Athlete. And I have Lupus.1093653_101213837286577

If you told me two years ago, while home health delivered IV steroids and taking a shower took every ounce of energy I could muster, that I’d be lifting more than my body weight or doing handstand push-ups today, I would have laughed in your face.

Me? The girl diagnosed at 32 with an incurable disease that attacks my body and causes fever, pain, fatigue and a host of other undesirable symptoms?

Me? The girl who could barely stay awake for 12 hours without napping?

Me? The girl who felt like she was failing at everything in life -at being a wife, being a mom, being a friend -failing at EVERYthing?

Yep. Me.  I would have laughed and then I would have proven myself wrong.
CrossFit Chelsea has completely changed my world.

When I walked in that first day, afraid, alone, unhealthy from all the toxic meds and emotionally defeated, I had no idea what the future held. Day by day, week by week I gained strength and endurance. unnamed Having a degree in Exercise Physiology, I was knowledgeable of exercise and how it affects your entire being…the adrenaline and endorphins, positive for the whole body not just the physical, blah blah blah. What I wasn’t knowledgeable about and what was different about Crossfit from the other gyms I had attended, was the community that Crossfit fosters, the constant encouragement and positive attitude that it instills in its coaches and members.

Simply put, Crossfit and the people I’m surrounded by make me a better “me”.  I’m physically stronger. I’m mentally sharper. And I’m unconditionally loved.  Sure, I’ve had some bad days, days where lupus makes me want to stay in bed instead of row for calories. But the difference now, is that someone texts or calls and says “Hey! I missed you today”. Or they bring dinner for my family so I don’t feel like such a failure of a mom or wife. Or they come sit with me when I can’t leave the house so I don’t feel so alone.

There’s no cure for lupus. It’s a nasty, unpredictable, incurable disease. But I’m fighting it. Me and my Crossfit Chelsea family. One day…One handstand push-up at a time.





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