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Diagnosis...

What do you do when your whole world is turned upside down?


I have been hard at work preparing and getting myself ready for the fight of our lives. 2023 was supposed to be my year, as we planned and I have been putting in a lot of work to get my body ready for the most spectacular showdown the world has ever seen. Candice and I were on our way to go claim our elusive Absa Cape Epic win. I had other goals and plans as well but that was a biggie.

Alas, the universe had other plans in store for me, and if I am honest this has been coming for a while.


Those who know me know that I am a fighter, and with that comes a type of determination that does not settle or stand back. But at the start of this year, after I fell ill with another Covid infection it all become too much. I was convinced something was wrong, as I have been saying for the better part of 1,5 years. I had to find out what was going on. This time I thankfully got to the right people at the right time, the best way I can describe it is divine intervention.


So down to the bottom line, the biggest and most important finding was that I have been diagnosed with Myocarditis. To those that are not medically inclined this in short means inflammation of your heart, and one of the reasons why so many young athletes are dropping like flies on the sports fields.

I was shocked and relieved and had a whole mix of emotions at once. I half expected the doctors to come back, like so many have before, and say nothing is wrong. But this time I could get a name and finally know that there is a reason why I am feeling the way I am and I was not going insane. There is something going on within my poor body that has been through so much, now it is my turn to take care of it as it has taken care of me and given me so much in all my years of racing and competing.


We are all human and this can happen to anyone. I never thought this would happen to me but here we are, taking on this uncertain journey of recovery. I am just so thankful we caught it in time before I became another statistic.


Thank you to all my sponsors for all their love and support, I am truly blessed with the most amazing people in my life. I will keep you all updated as I go but for now no exercise or anything that will strain my heart in any form, has been prescribed. This is not an easy fix and they cannot give me an exact timeline but a minimum of 6 months is the start, then we evaluate as we go.

Be safe out there friends and look after yourself, these are strange times we are in, and do not train when you are feeling a bit under the weather its not worth it.


Take care,

Mariske

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8 Comments


Edwin Childs
Feb 19, 2023

Sorry to read this Mariske 😪 a break is definitely required, professional athletes tend to not "listen" to their bodies 😪 i am convinced u"ll find something 2 burn that energy of yours in the interim, convinced we'll still c u at the Epic in some motivational role. Look after yourself 💕

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micro_korn
Feb 14, 2023

Hi Mariske,


Truly sorry to hear, my dad ”comrades athlete“ also got extremely sick about 2 weeks after his first covid injection. Hospitalised for about 6 months. Myocarditis is one of the biggest adverse events from the covid vaccines and the reason why thousands of court cases happening all over the world even South Africa.


All the best and speedy recovery ❤️‍🩹

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Wolf Stinnes
Wolf Stinnes
Feb 14, 2023

Hey Mariske, so sorry to hear, but knowing you, this will be a challenge you will overcome, and for sure there will be or irresistibly bubbly laughter at the front of the world's trails again!!

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rand
Feb 13, 2023

Hey my Water Girl from Absa training camp 2022! I’m sorry to read this but can sympathise. I’ve been “on and off” for a long time and all the heart enzyme tests come back “ok” but I know my body I’m missing top gear. Also had Covid last year and the vaccines. Very frustrating. Doc says I’m the fittest “unhealthy“ person he knows. Who did you go to?

Cheers, Don

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Mariske Strauss
Mariske Strauss
Feb 13, 2023
Replying to

Hi Don I would def recommend going to the Cardiologist or maybe someone that can go on a deep dive that does not sound right. i saw Dr A Saaiman. He is amazing and looks at the whole picture and cycles himself as well. Good luck and hope you find answers. Take care please ❤️

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Newton Fortuin
Newton Fortuin
Feb 13, 2023

Sorry to hear that Mariske!


Had the same experience after contracting COVID earlier this year, still can't go for a hard run, but I now can definitely do a hard cycle. Tried to reach out to you about Epic training, but the tech I developed helps a lot with this condition as well. Documented it in this post https://fb.watch/iFJPwei21h/.


This too shall pass, and you'll be back in the saddle again before you know it!

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