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Sarah Carlson

Spokane, WA
  • Sarah Carlson in the photo 1

I was on a business trip in 2003 in downtown NYC when I was a victim of a hit and run with an SUV. My pelvis was shattered and I had injuries to my knees and shoulders. At the time my two sets of twins were all under the age of 5. At first, I was told I may never walk again, and I wanted to be an example to my four children as to how to overcome adversity. I had in total 11 surgeries, I was disabled for 3 years.

During my recovery, I fantasized about biking with a local group of male cyclists who are competitive and fast. I thought a lot about how good it would feel to be relevant to them athletically. I systematically worked on it and I did join their group and I am still a member. I was the only female at the time and to this day when I beat them up hills, they call it being "chicked." I went on to compete in numerous cycling, swimming, and triathlon events. I participated in Two Ironman and had a rewarding experience.

I believe I have had the recovery I have had because Dr. Helfet at HSS performed the most important surgery to rebuild my pelvis which is intact 17 years later. I also believe with positive thinking and a commitment to moving thoughtfully, recovery can be rewarding. I am so grateful to Dr. Helfet and the HSS staff for their outstanding care; they gave me a new lease on life so I could be that role model for my children who are young adults today. I still work out regularly, and although I don't have another Ironman planned, I do plan on "clicking" those men in my cycling group this year.