Unbreakable

She has beaten invasive cancer, broken world records and overcome emotional and physical challenges. Karen Newman doesn’t just chase her dreams, she catches them



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Karen Newman sprinted from the water ahead of the pack, peeled off her wetsuit and made for her bike at the World Triathlon Championships in London last summer. When she grabbed it, the USA team member discovered that her bike had been tampered with and the bolts on the handlebars had been loosened. As she watched her fellow competitors speed away, along with her gold-medal dreams, Karen made a split-second decision. She would ride the treacherous, rain-slicked course with no hands. “I was the top American. I was in first place. I was not going to be defeated,” she says.

Pedaling as fast as she dared, and tapping the handlebars to keep the front wheel straight, Karen did finish the 40-kilometer course that day. “It took me a long time,” she says. “That hurt.” As a consolation prize, she bought a blue leather jacket at a chic London boutique. But she also made a promise to herself. Instead of letting the loss get her down, she would use it to spur herself on. Four weeks later, Karen went on to win four gold medals at the Huntsman World Senior Games in St. George, Utah, setting a new world triathlon record in the process.

Wife, mother, athlete, cancer survivor—Karen Newman knows a thing or two about resilience and perseverance, of never taking no for an answer, of turning challenges into opportunities and always holding fast to one’s dream.

“As bad as London was—and it was bad—everything was redeemed in Utah,” she says over tea in the living room of her Old Greenwich home one afternoon this past December. When Karen says everything, she’s not just talking about winning medals and setting records. She’s talking about the serendipitous moments, the people and the kindness she met along the way. Like her seatmate on the flight from JFK, which was delayed by several hours, who insisted on driving her straight to the stadium in St. George so she wouldn’t miss the opening ceremonies. She’s talking about getting to the packed stadium just minutes before the ceremonies started and having seats suddenly open up in the front row. And, finally, she’s talking about the inconvenience of having to ride her bike to the pool for a practice swim because there was no shuttle bus available. “I was cycling on a four-lane highway. It was terrible. But…” and here she grins. “I realized my cable was about to go. I needed a bike shop fast.” She got off the highway at the next exit and what did she see? The Red Rocks Bike Shop. “If that hadn’t happened, it would have ruined my race,” she says.

 

Greenwich Agenda

  • Greenwich Harbor Sunset Wine Cruise | Greenwich, CT

    2014.06.05
     @ Delamar Hotel Dock

    The boat "Prudence" departs from the Delamar Hotel Dock on 500 Steamboat Rd. All the wine is sponsored through VALS with food...

  • SM&NC Farm Market

    2014.06.15
     @ Stamford Museum & Nature Center

    Sundays, June 15 – October 5, 10am – 2pm We're thrilled to bring back the SM&NC Farm Market — now on Sundays!...

  • Exclusive Tour of Modern and Contemporary Art at the Yale University Art Gallery

    2014.09.09
     @ Yale University Art Gallery

    Join JCC Greenwich for an exclusive tour with museum curator Elizabeth Manekin. The collection is noteworthy for exemplary works from the...

  • Understanding the Gaza War: Strategic & Political Implications

    2014.09.09
     @ Greenwich Library, Cole Auditorium

    Dr. Efraim Inbar is a Professor in Political Studies at Bar-Ilan University and Director of its renowned Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic...

  • Bruce Museum: Look and See - Into the Deep

    2014.09.10
     @ Bruce Museum

    A program especially designed for children ages 3-5 years and their adult caregivers, who will explore the Museum’s exhibition through...

  • College Admissions Boot Camp | Greenwich, CT

    2014.09.13

    College Prep 360 will be offering two college admissions “boot camps” in their Greenwich office over the summer. The first workshop...

  • Nigh Season: New Paintings By David Konigsberg

    2014.09.13
     @ Kenise Barnes Fine Art

    Dates: September 13 – October 31, 2014 Opening Reception: September 13, 6 – 8:30 PM  Public Invited   NIGH...

  • Undulate: Paintings By Julie Gross and Margaret Neill

    2014.09.13
     @ Kenise Barnes Fine Art

    GALLERY II Dates: September 13 – October 31, 2014 Opening Reception: September 13, 6 – 8:30 PM Public Invited...

  • Greenwich Area Newcomers Annual Lobster Fest

    2014.09.14
     @ Tod's Point Clambake Area

    This is our kickoff event each year-held at Tod's Point Clambake area. The event is scheduled for Sunday September 14th starting...

  • Information Fair

    2014.09.16
     @ YMCA

    Our Annual Information Fair - This event showcases non profits , community businesses, schools and  services in the Greenwich...

  • Laurel House Family Seminar Series

    2014.09.18
     @ Laurel House

    Thursday evenings, September 18, October 2, 16, 30, 6:30-8:00 pm Join us Thursday evenings for this four part Family Seminar Series as...

  • The Many Faces of Multi Media

    2014.09.20
     @ Meli-Melo of Greenwich

    Dr. Julia Trebing, Director Creative Therapies in Stamford, CT exhibits her paintings at Meli-Melo Creperie & Juice Bar  during Sept...

  • SoulCycle GWCH for Make-A-Wish CT

    2014.09.20
     @ SoulCycle

    Make-A-Wish Connecticut is thrilled to be partnering with SoulCycle's Greenwich location for a charity ride on Saturday, September 20th!...

  • Wall Street Tennis Challenge

    2014.09.20
     @ Greenwich Country Club

    The goal of The Wall Street Tennis Challenge is to support the Ovarian Cancer Research Foundation’s efforts while spreading awareness...

  • Arts & Crafts on Bedford

    2014.09.20
     @ Bedford Street

    Shop at over 100 craft and artisan boutiques on Bedford Street, which will be closed to traffic for the weekend. Dine in our extended sidewalk...


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