Rehab From Addiction Through Extreme Sports

23How can you put yourself through an effective rehab programme if you have been addicted to drugs and alcohol for more than 15 years? How do you reconcile your vast talents and wasted life in drugs and alcohol? How do you come to terms with an addicted mother who committed suicide in your toddler years? Meet Todd Crandell from Ohio, and learn how you can turn addicted life around through a rehab programme based on extreme sports that will give you purpose and meaning in life.

Todd’s sad story began when he was 3. His mother, who was addicted to drugs committed suicide. That left a scar in Todd s deep that he suffered from emotional problems from a young age. He could not reconcile with the fact that his mother was gone. Where was the love that was supposed to be given to a child growing? His father, dealing with his own grieve then could do little to help him cope. As a result, by 13, Todd has started drinking. At 16, he had his first taste of cocaine and that got him hooked. All those years of searching for something that would ease his pain of his mother’s lost suddenly seem to be over. He thought the high of drugs could ease that pain. For temporary moments, he felt that relieve. Drugs and alcohol was his rehab from the pain of losing his mother.

Todd was always a talented sportsman. He excelled in ice hockey and was active in other sports. At high school, he was one of the best goal tender in the team. But as his drug addition got hold of him, he became less and less of a player he was supposed to be. His coached sacked him reluctantly, but Todd did not care. Drugs were his rehab and detox from the pain that never went away. The end of his high school sports days was also the beginning of a journey of torment, jail, arrest, despair, and aimlessness for him. Living and dying became non existence to him. He could not see any difference.

In 1991, his father gave him an ultimatum to go to rehab or get out of his home. Todd told his father that he would have enough of his ‘rehab’ first before going for a real rehab and detox programme. He even threatened to ‘kill’ his father if he tried to stop him. There was nothing Todd’s father could do, but he never gave up on his son. As months past, Todd saw the love and care of his dad, and in 1993, while drinking beer, he simply put down his drink and walked away. Todd had reached his turning point. His real rehab had begun.

He began playing sports again, and used that platform as his main rehab programme. Playing hockey again did not mean much to him anymore. He needed something more intense and extreme that would stretch him beyond what he has experienced. The pain he had suffered during his addiction days needed to be replaced by another form of pain for this new rehab programme to work. Triathlon became his new drug. The Iron Man through 2.4 miles of swimming in open waters, 120 miles on the road bike over rolling terrain and 26 mile of running to test the human endurance to the limit, became his new drug towards a more purposeful and meaningful life.

Todd trained for months preparing for this big test. His new rehab programme reshaped his body and also redirected his energies to something more purposeful. When the time came, Todd succeeded in his first Iron Man. He found his new drug, this time it is a positive form of drug. Todd went on to complete more than ten Iron Man races. In 2001 Todd also found new drive and purpose in his life. He discovered that his life was actually preparing him for his ultimate calling of helping those in similar troubles as him. He started the ‘Racing for Recovery’ programme in Ohio, and that had drawn huge interest from those like him before, seeking to rehab themselves from drug and alcohol addiction. Todd also found success in his family. He now has a family of his own, although his work in the “Racing for Recovery’ programme took him away from them quite often. But his new found hope and drive had given Todd a new lease of life. From hereon, his new rehab programme would continue and there will be no end. We are constantly on rehab once we have found our calling in life.

Jimmy Tong has been a Physical Educator for 13 Years in Singapore, with degree in sports science and physical education from Loughborough University in UK. He has extensive coaching experience in soccer, floorball and rugby teams in Singapore Schools. He is currently a sports development officer in Singapore schools as well as an active contributor of sports training articles to improve sports performance in athletes. He hopes to enable people’s success to come by inspiring them with true sports motivational and inspirational stories.