Running "For Those Battling Cancer Who Cannot"
After her initial shock at being diagnosed with stage 4 Hodgkin lymphoma, Lynn used exercise to help herself through her treatment.
At age 37, Lynn Seuberling, a busy, health-conscious mom, heard words that stopped her cold: "You have cancer."
The diagnosis of stage 4 Hodgkin lymphoma explained the pain and illness, the Royersford, Pa., woman had been feeling for six months, but it plunged her into depression and panic.
"How did this happen?" Lynn remembers wondering. How would she tell her two kids? Would her hair fall out? Would she die?
For a month, Lynn felt numb, trudging through her cancer treatments and spending the rest of the day in bed. Her weight dropped from 130 to 105 pounds. Then one morning, she heard her young daughter crying, overwhelmed with the task of getting herself and her brother ready for school while Lynn lay in bed.
"It was like a switch went off," Lynn said. "I couldn't lay there and let cancer beat me anymore. I called my neighbor and we went to the gym."
That first day, Lynn walked slowly on a treadmill for just 10 minutes. With her doctor's approval, she gradually started walking more and gaining some weight back. To her delight, exercise helped lessen the effects of the chemotherapy, allowing her to live her life more fully.
After 16 rounds of chemotherapy, in March 2014, Lynn was declared cancer-free. Just 45 days after her last chemo session, she ran the Broad Street Run, Philadelphia's popular 10-mile race.
"People doubted I could do it, but it just fueled my fire," she said. "Cancer was not my death sentence. Cancer is not my life anymore, but it's a friendly reminder to live life to the fullest, and make each day count."
Lynn's latest challenge is the AACR Rock 'n' Roll Philadelphia Half Marathon, which she'll run as a part of AACR's Runners for Research team ambassador to raise awareness and funds for cancer research.
"I run for me, as a reminder of how far I've come, and for those battling cancer who cannot run," she said. "I am a proud survivor!"