Cycling Through Adversity with Carly Williamson – Successful Athletes Podcast 010

Learn how Carly used TrainerRoad and cycling to help her deal with the hardships and adversity of being a care-giver for her husband who had terminal cancer, how she dealt with mental challenges, why taking time for yourself is important and more in Episode 10 of The Successful Athletes Podcast.

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Thanks again for letting me share my story! I hope it’s relatable and applicable to anyone going through something difficult (and let’s be honest, who isn’t??). It’s important to have healthy outlets and I’m so glad I found cycling and TrainerRoad to help keep me focused. If anyone has any questions, feel free to reach out!


Carly thanks for being honest and brave and sharing your perspective. I was reminded of how me getting exercise contributes to being a better boss, father, husband, etc., and how this “selfish” act is a gift to others. :slightly_smiling_face:

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Thank you for this podcast! I obviously can’t know what its like to go through what Carly has, but Jonathan made it a point that her story provides life lessons for us all, and I can certainly relate to the story where his son is asking to play Legos as he’s heading out the door.

Thank you, Carly, for sharing your story.


Thank you for sharing your life, Carly. While my story is different, I have traveled the same road of care giving and loss. I lost my wife to cancer after decades together. I was moved by the subtle aspects of your account that can’t really be understood unless one experiences them. Whether relating the challenge of the journey, the loss, the dilemma of how to best invest time, how to care for self, etc. it all rang so true. In a gift reminiscent of your late husband’s encouragement to you to engage life to the full, my late wife said to me, ”When I’m gone, please don’t sit with your head in your hands. Go! Do! Live!” Eleven years later, those few words have become the greatest gift she ever gave me. I’ll never forget it and I celebrate the gift every time I’m on the bike (even for TR workouts!!!) There’s no part of life to which it cannot be applied. You are an encouragement of the first order. Thank You!!!


I’m so glad you were able to relate it to everyday life! My intention was for it to be of use in a variety of situations.

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I LOVE this!! What a great mantra - so simple and profound. I love that you have it on your top tube so she’s with you for every workout! Thank you for sharing this.

Thanks for sharing @CarlyZoe

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Thanks @CarlyZoe for sharing, and @Jonathan for facilitating the conversation. I am just catching up on previous episodes of Successful Athletes and this episode was an immediate listen to after scanning the episode list.

I can relate to so much - I am also a young caregiver, engineer, spouse, medicine organizer, doctor’s appointment driver, hospital bed-sider, dog dad (and real dad), avid “notes” app user, and cyclist. I can hear in Carly’s voice the first time she said “my husband…Austin” how much saying his name out loud means.

While my caregiving journey is ongoing, cycling is absolutely the physical and mental self-care that I need to be my best self and be the best caregiver I can be. Low volume is all I can manage at the moment, but part of caregiving is learning to be ok with controlling things you can and to be in the passenger seat other times.

While I’m in several caregiving networks and several cycling networks, this is the first time the two have really met and hearing this podcast is JUST what I needed. Thanks.


@pedalpusher174, I’m so glad to hear someone else using cycling for self-care while in a similar position! I also had a really hard time finding a connection between the cycling and caregiving networks - all too often, my caregiver friends simply neglected themselves, to the detriment of everyone around them.

This is so good!! It’s a hard pill to swallow at times for sure.
All the best to you and your family! I hope you continue to care for yourself as you care for all of those around you.